Odesa, 30 April 2015 – EUBAM’s Advisory Board Meeting met today and discussed future strategies. The meeting was attended by representatives from the Foreign Ministries, border and law enforcement agencies of Moldova and Ukraine, the EU Delegations to Moldova and Ukraine, as well as IOM, OSCE and UNDP.
Over the last year, the Mission has been focusing on three key areas for its cooperation with Moldova and Ukraine; harmonization of legislation and practices in line with EU standards; border security and confidence-building; and strengthening the professional networks, systems and infrastructure of its partner services – the border and customs agencies of Moldova and Ukraine. Among the topics discussed were the security situation, the demarcation of the joint border and ongoing reforms in the border and customs services.
Head of the EU Delegation to Ukraine, Ambassador Tombinski, who chaired the meeting, said: “The EU is delivering a range of activities to help Moldova and Ukraine fulfil the requirements of their Association Agreements with the EU and the related Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area. We are doing this both through direct assistance and through our programmes. EUBAM is a part of that effort and is also using its expertise, networks and local presence to complement the work of other EU agencies and other donor organisations.”
Since December EUBAM has increased its presence at the Transnistrian segment of the border, enabling the Mission to carry out more monitoring of the movement of goods and people. At the same time, EUBAM has used its technical expertise to build confidence among government, commercial and social stakeholders and to put forward proposals to further facilitate the free flow of people and trade across the wider region. EU Ambassador to Moldova, Pirkka Tapiola mentioned in this respect: “This is especially important in relation to the confidence building measures implemented on both banks of the Dniester River, thus providing inputs to supporting the Transnistrian settlement process.”
“In the existing difficult economic and security environment, it’s more important than ever not just to maintain, but to boost the free flow of trade across the wider region” said Francesco Bastagli, Head of EUBAM. “This requires mutual trust and a willingness to be flexible.”
Daniela Cujba, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs and European Integration of the Republic of Moldova said: “It is worth emphasizing the growing role of the Mission in the context of the implementation of the Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area-related provisions of the EU-Moldova Association Agreement. We count on EUBAM’s expertise and experience which can help us to get concrete results and move forward with our European integration agenda. EUBAM is one of the most successful projects of the EU and we express our support for extension of its mandate for another two-year cycle”.
Vsevolod Chentsov, Head of the EU Directorate of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine said: “Ukraine welcomes the active involvement of the Mission within the framework of the strategic course of Ukraine and Moldova’s European integration, focused on reforming the border and customs services, transformation of the law enforcement agencies, and improving the skills of the Ukrainian and Moldovan regulatory bodies.
The Board welcomed EUBAM support to the partner services in the area of border control, visa liberalization and confidence-building measures. Both Moldova and Ukraine expressed their support to the extension of the Mission’s mandate beyond November 2015.