The government has torn up supplier Raytheon’s £742 million contract on the e-Borders immigration programme.
A terse statement from the Home Office said the government has “no confidence” in Raytheon after work on the £1.2 billion scheme started to run 12 months late, indicating an “extremely disappointing” performance. Raytheon had been in breach of contract since July a year ago, it said.
Raytheon’s subcontractors on the project include Accenture, Detica, Serco, QinetiQ, Steria, Capgemini and DAON.
Around £188 million has been spent on supplier costs so far. The systems currently in place include software for the collection of data in advance of travel and its subsequent storage, the technology to enable carriers to feed information into a central hub, and a National Border Targeting Centre where police review matches highlighted by the system.
Raytheon missed many milestones, and there was a “question of quality” over some work delivered so far, the government said. Extensive negotiations with Raytheon about a remedial plan had failed.
Damien Green, immigration minister, said: "The government is determined to get value for money from its major contracts and requires the highest standard of performance to be delivered."
"We will now seek alternative providers to continue to deliver this project as a matter of urgency."
The government supports the concept of e-Borders, Green said. The scheme aims to check passenger details against UK police immigration watch lists.
Raytheon had not commented at the time of writing.
In April, the House of Commons Home Affairs Committee published a report stating that the e-Borders programme was “impossible” to achieve, with “so many major difficulties left to resolve.