EU extends Border Management in Central Asia program

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BISHKEK (TCA) — The European Union-funded 9th phase of the Border Management in Central Asia (BOMCA) programme will be extended until December 14th, 2019. The decision was made by the European Commission and supported by all five Central Asian States. The European Union allocated an additional amount of 1.6 million EUR for the extension period, and therefore all five Central Asian countries have signed addendums to their financing agreements with the EU.

In total 161 activities were implemented by BOMCA 9 by mid-May 2018 in all Central Asia countries with engagement of over 2,300 state officials – representatives of programme final beneficiary agencies. Among the activities was the provision of different kind of equipment for Border Guard Services in all Central Asian countries with total budget of more than EUR 240,000 and launch of distance learning systems for Border Guard Services of Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan.

Chargé d’Affaires a.i. of the European Union to the Kyrgyz Republic Jaap Ora said: “European Union attaches great importance to programmes which enhance cooperation between all Central Asian states and BOMCA has become one of the most successful ones. It has demonstrated excellent results, therefore, as agreed with our Central Asian partners, the EU decided to extend the programme until end of 2019. I am confident that the programme will bring new tangible results and further increase cross border cooperation in the region.”

“BOMCA diligently sought the best and most innovative ways to strengthen the capacity of its beneficiaries through technical support, institutional development and improvement of professional skills and the capacity of agencies involved in border management issues,” said Ularbek Sharsheev, Head of the State Border Service of the Kyrgyz Republic.

In the extension period, the programme will continue its efforts under three main components, covering institutional development of border management agencies, the institutional framework for the management of mixed migration flows and the adoption of trade facilitation regimes at borders. Among other actions, activities in risk management, prevention of corruption, prevention and detection of smuggling, optimising control procedures at border checkpoints and enhancing interagency and regional cooperation will be implemented. The programme will continue to build upon its previous achievements, particularly by providing expert technical advisory support during activities in the national, bi-/multilateral and regional contexts.

For the extension period commencing June 15th, 2018, Col. Maris Domins has been appointed as the Regional Manager. He takes over the post seceding Raitis Tiliks, who has occupied the position since September 2015. Mr. Domins joins BOMCA after a decade-long tenure as Head of the International Cooperation Department of the Latvian State Border Guard, which is the leading partner of the BOMCA 9 implementing Consortium.

Sergey Kwan

TCA