New EU-funded project on migration and border management | EUNewsletter

New EU-funded project on migration and border management

20 April 2016
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On 19 April 2016, a new EU-funded project on migration and border management was launched. The project is designed to further strengthen migration and border management in Armenia and bring it closer to European standards. More precisely, the project will increase efficiency at border crossing points, facilitate trade, and support possible visa liberalisation dialogue between the EU and Armenia, if and when agreed politically.
The new project is implemented by the International Centre for Migration Policy Development in partnership with UNDP. The head of the EU Delegation to Armenia, Ambassador Piotr Switalski, attended the conference and stressed the project’s importance: ‘This project is important on different levels; the Caucasus is a historical, traditional, strategically important crossroads for entering Europe. The current migration crisis affecting Europe does not include this region; however, Armenia and other countries of the region strategically constitute a natural corridor to Europe”. He also stressed that new migration flows are likely to emerge and could affect the region due to the age of migration and the current crisis is only one of its manifestations.
13006681_1009508885769707_4255126660990089237_nThe EU Ambassador also shared why there is a direct link between migration and border management in Europe and in countries such as Armenia: “Migration is a challenge – Europe needs to find a solution, integrate migrants of different origins. Therefore, the EU is supporting projects aimed at discussing and solving migration challenges both within and beyond Europe. Of importance to Armenia, the EU is helping the Armenian and Georgian authorities modernise border crossings; we want to continue our support further south as well. Friendly and efficient border crossings are very important for Armenia, as it they should open up opportunities to profit from greater contact with neighbouring states. Unfortunately, today, Armenia is in this partial isolation due to border issues with Turkey and Azerbaijan. The EU will continue to promote friendly and accessible borders due to the importance of economic development and people-to-people contact. The EU is currently investing more than €10 million to assist Armenia in migration and other related phenomena. More than 20,000 Syrian refugees have arrived in Armenia; the EU has for some time funded a project to support them. Armenia can apply for additional funding to prolong this initiative. We hope that Armenia will continue to be a migrant-friendly country, that it will promote traditional values of tolerance, and help other people coming here to feel at home’.
13006560_1009508555769740_3505740207835340316_nAram Tananyan, Head of Staff of the Armenian National Security Council, thanked the EU for its support: ‘We are here today to launch a project on border management and security. This is not the first project to concentrate on this issue; however, it is the first to include additional focus on migration and relevant legal and non-legal issues. We have discussed all the details with our partners from the EU to ensure results aligned with EU standards’.
The conference focused on Armenia’s migration and border management priorities, addressing the importance of trade corridors and presenting the project strategy and objectives. Key project outputs include assistance to the preparation of the EU-Armenia visa liberalisation dialogue, greater inter-agency cooperation through the extension of “integrated border management” into the Armenian border management system, and the development of a tender process to improve the Meghri border crossing point. ¬

New EU-funded project on migration and border management

On 19 April 2016, a new EU-funded project on migration and border management was launched. The project is designed to further strengthen migration and border management in Armenia and bring it closer to European standards. More precisely, the project will increase efficiency at border crossing points, facilitate trade, and support possible visa liberalisation dialogue between the EU and Armenia, if and when agreed politically. The new project is implemented by the International Centre for Migration Policy Development in partnership with UNDP. The head of the EU Delegation to Armenia, Ambassador Piotr Switalski, attended the conference and stressed the project’s importance: ‘This project is important on different levels; the Caucasus is a historical, traditional, strategically important crossroads for entering Europe. The current migration crisis affecting Europe does not include this region; however, Armenia and other countries of the region strategically constitute a natural corridor to Europe". He also stressed that new migration flows are likely to emerge and could affect the region due to the age of migration and the current crisis is only one of its manifestations. 13006681_1009508885769707_4255126660990089237_nThe EU Ambassador also shared why there is a direct link between migration and border management in Europe and in countries such as Armenia: "Migration is a challenge – Europe needs to find a solution, integrate migrants of different origins. Therefore, the EU is supporting projects aimed at discussing and solving migration challenges both within and beyond Europe. Of importance to Armenia, the EU is helping the Armenian and Georgian authorities modernise border crossings; we want to continue our support further south as well. Friendly and efficient border crossings are very important for Armenia, as it they should open up opportunities to profit from greater contact with neighbouring states. Unfortunately, today, Armenia is in this partial isolation due to border issues with Turkey and Azerbaijan. The EU will continue to promote friendly and accessible borders due to the importance of economic development and people-to-people contact. The EU is currently investing more than €10 million to assist Armenia in migration and other related phenomena. More than 20,000 Syrian refugees have arrived in Armenia; the EU has for some time funded a project to support them. Armenia can apply for additional funding to prolong this initiative. We hope that Armenia will continue to be a migrant-friendly country, that it will promote traditional values of tolerance, and help other people coming here to feel at home’. 13006560_1009508555769740_3505740207835340316_nAram Tananyan, Head of Staff of the Armenian National Security Council, thanked the EU for its support: ‘We are here today to launch a project on border management and security. This is not the first project to concentrate on this issue; however, it is the first to include additional focus on migration and relevant legal and non-legal issues. We have discussed all the details with our partners from the EU to ensure results aligned with EU standards'. The conference focused on Armenia’s migration and border management priorities, addressing the importance of trade corridors and presenting the project strategy and objectives. Key project outputs include assistance to the preparation of the EU-Armenia visa liberalisation dialogue, greater inter-agency cooperation through the extension of “integrated border management” into the Armenian border management system, and the development of a tender process to improve the Meghri border crossing point. ¬