The third MIEUX Action in Moldova was launched on 9 November 2021 and seeks to ensure quality management of integrated border management principles in the country. High-level representatives from Moldovan authorities, ICMPD and the EU Delegation as well as European experts discussed the relevance, importance and next steps of this project.
What is at stake? Quality control of integrated border management in Moldova
Border management and security have been two of the main issues on the agenda of relations between Moldova and the EU. Due to its geographical position, this Eastern European country is of particular interest for the management of EU external borders and migration flows. The Moldovan authorities have therefore developed a comprehensive and integrated border management (IBM) system in order to ensure national security and compatibility between the national and European specialised institutions.
Implementation of the IBM concept in Moldova contributes to strengthening security at the state borders and the safety of persons, facilitating legal crossings by persons and goods, while preventing and combatting irregular migration and cross-border crime.
The Moldovan National IBM Strategy 2018–2023, and its recently approved Action Plan, are being implemented and regulated at national level but interdependency makes coordination among key institutions difficult to achieve in practice. This poses a challenge for the monitoring and evaluating of the strategy. The General Inspectorate of the Border Police (GIBP), under the Ministry of Interior, therefore requested MIEUX+ support to develop a quality control mechanism for the implementation of the IBM principles. For this Action, experts working at border controls’ agencies in their respective countries (Austria, Latvia and Romania) will collaborate with partners on how to ensure the quality management of the existing IBM strategy.
Dialogue between partners from Moldova and EU representatives
During the launch event of the Moldova VI Action on Tuesday 9 November 2021, high-level speakers from the Moldovan authorities introduced their ongoing efforts on how to evaluate the existing IBM strategy and discussed the way forward.
Representing the supervising institution for all matters related to migration and border management in the country, Ms. Jana COSTACHI, State Secretary, Ministry of Internal Affairs and former MIEUX+ expert, highlighted the importance of collaborating with a project like MIEUX+: “I am convinced that the cooperation we have been able to establish with MIEUX+ and ICMPD partners is that tool to enhance dialogue for the implementation of European practices and national capacity building.”
From the partner authority, M. Daniel MARTNOS, Deputy Head of the General Inspectorate of the Border Police (GIBP), detailed the relevance of the MIEUX+ Action, “The project complements the activities carried out so far by the Republic of Moldova to ensure compatibility, interoperability and proper functioning of the authorities participating in the integrated management of the state border. These steps are essential for our institutional development, continuity of reforms and commitments assumed by our country in its European course.”
To complement the other speakers and organisations represented during the event, Ms Sophie Dagand, who manages the programmes on Security and Migration at the EU Delegation to Moldova, mentioned the eagerness from the EU to work together with partners and experts on improving the quality management of a system inspired by European practices.
Finally, M. Jean-Yves Charriou, Senior Border Management Security Advisor at ICMPD, also made some key remarks on this Action: “ICMPD has been implementing and supporting many initiatives in which the IBM Strategy and Action Plan occupy a strong and central place. Most importantly, we support the partner authorities driving these processes to develop the tools and capacities to ensure translation of these documents into action. With a strong presence already in the EU Neighbourhood, we are working in this direction in many partner countries and we are glad to see this trend continuing now with Moldova.”
The presentations were concluded by remarks from M. Romain Gustot, MIEUX+ Project Officer and coordinator for this Action, who thanked the partners, experts and EUD for the renewed collaboration and trust they lay on MIEUX+.
What is next?
Because this project can only work if all relevant institutions are involved and committed to join the efforts, representatives from the Customs Control Department and other key stakeholders working on IBM presented their institutions and will be an integral part of the project via the set-up of an ad-hoc Technical Working Group.
Looking forward, MIEUX+ experts and the team will meet with partners’ representatives and other stakeholders to launch the first phase of the Action, namely capacity and training needs assessment, between 29 November and 03 December. This mission will set the scene for the development of a handbook and training course on monitoring and evaluating the application of the IBM principles in Moldova.
Stay tuned for more information!