A new Passenger Information Unit will be set up in Dublin

The Government has approved counter-terrorism proposals which will require advance passenger information for flights entering or leaving the State.

The system is part of an EU shared intelligence network to counter terrorism and serious crime.

Under the plans, a Passenger Information Unit (PIU) is to be established in Dublin to collect, process and transfer data for use by law enforcement authorities in Ireland, other EU member states and Europol.

Dublin Airport | File photo

The new legislation on Passenger Name Records (PNR) will require airlines to provide advance passenger information to authorities.

The legislation is based on an EU directive, which the Department of Justice says Ireland must bring in by May 25th.

The PIU is currently operating on a pilot basis using test data.

The department says PNR data will only be retained for five years and then must be destroyed, unless legal proceedings are taking place.

The PNR data must also be depersonalised after six months, by masking out personal data elements.