Frontex, the European Border and Coast Guard Agency, has announced the successful completion of the Eastern Partnership Integrated Border Management (EaP – IBM) Capacity Building Project. Launched in July 2014, the project aimed at strengthening the ability of the border agencies of the six Eastern Partnership countries (Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine) to properly implement integrated border management at their frontiers.
The activities of the EaP – IBM Capacity Building Project encompassed a wide-ranging programme of initiatives, focused on the improvement of IBM training capacities, which included initiatives to promote good governance and fundamental rights. Eastern Partnership countries were trained in new fraudulent document detection methods as well as combatting human trafficking. Training was also given to expand risk analysis networks.
The project paid a particular attention to compliance with citizens’ fundamental rights while enhancing border controls. Moreover, the EaP – IBM Capacity Building Project supported the six post-Soviet countries in developing communication and public relations skills, educational curricula and support for training centres.
More than 80 training courses were prepared by Frontex in the framework of the project, and involved more than 600 border guards and 600 customs officials.
“This project was an exemplary case of cooperation between authorities in the EU and the Eastern Partnership countries, and also between border guard and customs services. It shows how much can be achieved when we work together across the EU borders,” said Frontex Executive Director Fabrice Leggeri.
EaP – IBM Capacity Building Project was the first technical assistance project implemented by Frontex as a leading agency. A number of international and European organisations, such as the International Organisation for Migration, the World Customs Organisation and International Centre for Migration Policy Development offered support, with the European Commission providing the financial assistance. It is expected that structured cooperation between Frontex and the Eastern Partnership countries will continue.