The UK has agreed a deal to boost the number of officers patrolling beaches in northern France by 40% as they aim to tackle the migrant crisis.

Rishi Sunak has hailed the historic deal with France as contributing to his efforts to “grip illegal migration”, which he said has consumed much of his time in No 10 so far.

British staff will be embedded in French control rooms for the first time as the plans aim to cut down on the number of small boat crossings, as the number of people making the journey to the UK this year topped 40,000.

Further measures signed off in Paris include an investment in CCTV and dog detection teams to keep tabs on ports and plans to better equip officers with drones and night vision capabilities.

Bournemouth Echo:

Meanwhile, Britain and France have agreed to step up co-operation on the issue with European partners, with a meeting of the “Calais Group” of neighbouring countries to be scheduled as soon as possible.

A new taskforce will also be established to address the “recent rise in Albanians and organised crime groups exploiting illegal migration routes” into Western Europe, No 10 said.

Elsewhere, joint UK-France analysis teams will seek to boost information sharing.

Lastly, the deal pledges investment in French reception and removal centres for migrants who are prevented from making the crossing to the UK.

The agreement was signed by Home Secretary Suella Braverman and French interior minister Gerald Darmanin on Monday morning.

The Prime Minister said he was “confident” the number of small boat crossings would come down over time after the number of people making the perilous journey to the UK across the Channel so far this year topped 40,000.

Bournemouth Echo:

Speaking to reporters travelling with him to Indonesia for the G20 summit, Mr Sunak said he was “pleased” to be signing the deal with France, while confirming that the annual amount paid by the UK will increase to 72 million euros (£63 million).

“What the agreement says is that should be a foundation for even greater co-operation in the months ahead.

“When it comes to migration more generally, I do think that the absolute priority that the British people have right now, as do I, is to grip illegal migration.

“I made a commitment that I would grip it in the summer. And I can tell you all that I’ve spent more time working on that than anything else – other than, obviously, the autumn statement – over the past couple of weeks.

“Look, I’ve been honest that there’s not a single thing to do to fix it and we can’t fix it overnight.

“But there’s a range of things I’m working on, including the French deal, where I’m confident we can bring the numbers down over time and that’s what I’m going to deliver.”