SmartGates boost NZ’s airport efficiency in world rankings

Two surveys put New Zealand sixth in the world for airport efficiency.

The government’s investment in SmartGate technology at international airports is paying off, Customs Minister Nicky Wagner says.

Two new international surveys on border control processes show New Zealand rates sixth in the world for efficiency.

Mrs Wagner says Customs’ own passenger and commercial satisfaction surveys confirm this high ranking.

“The 2015 survey, conducted between March and July, shows traveller satisfaction with Customs at 92% and commercial customer satisfaction at 88%,” she says.

The World Bank’s Logistics Performance Index and the World Economic Forum’s Enabling Trade assessment both rank New Zealand sixth, out of 160 and 138 countries respectively, on indicators that help the business operating environment.

“This is a great result given that a record number of air passengers – 10.4 million – crossed our border this year, and over 96% got through within 45 minutes,” Mrs Wagner says. “This is well above the International Civil Aviation Organisation standard of 90%.”

The government allocated an additional $6 million in the budget for new generation SmartGates at Auckland, Wellington, and Christchurch airports. Nine new one-step gates will be installed by the end of the year and a further 20 over the next 18-24 months.

The new gates incorporate the passport scanner into the gate, eliminating the kiosk and ticket. Passengers scan their passport and step up to the biometric scanner in a single process.

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