On 1 December 2017, the European Union Border Assistance Mission to the Republic of Moldova and Ukraine (EUBAM) announced the appointment of a new Head of Mission, Slawomir Pichor of Poland, and the adoption of a new mandate.
In its new phase, the EUBAM will further target its efforts to monitor and evaluate border and customs control measures and procedures in Moldova and Ukraine and to provide advice to the relevant authorities.
The Ambassador of the European Union to the Republic of Moldova, Peter Michalko, said that “by starting a new phase, the European Union reconfirms its assistance to citizens’ everyday lives. Travelling from one country to the other – whether it is for business or private reasons – should happen without major obstacles.”
“The fight against traffickers and smugglers is equally important, but should not be to the detriment of the vast majority of people that travel for valid reasons,” he added.
The new Head of EUBAM said that the full approximation to European standards of the border management procedures in the region and further contribution to the Transnistrian settlement process will be his top priorities.
EUBAM has worked in both the Republic of Moldova and Ukraine since 2005. While it has its Headquarters in Odesa (Ukraine), a significant part of its staff is permanently based in Chisinau, Giurgiulesti and Otaci in order to work with the Moldovan Customs Services and Border Police.
The Mission’s main objective, however, has remained unchanged over the years, namely to improve service delivery to the citizens of both countries involved (e.g. through shorter waiting periods at border crossings and by strengthening border security) and assisting the authorities in the fight against fraud and smugglers.
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