EU Provides Cutting-Edge Equipment for EU-Ukraine Trade Facilitation and Security

Tuesday, June 25, 2024

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On 25 June, the EU4IBM-Resilience Project, funded by the EU and implemented by the International Centre for Migration Policy Development (ICMPD), delivered a modern cargo X-ray scanner to the “Chop (Tysa)” border crossing point. Valued at approximately EUR 2.5 million EUR, this donation is part of the “EU-Ukraine Solidarity Lanes” initiative launched to ensure the efficient flow of trade across Ukraine’s borders after the Russian full-scale invasion.

The Rapiscan Eagle M60 mobile scanner will enable customs officers to quickly and effectively inspect cargo, detect illegal or prohibited items while facilitating the smooth flow of legitimate trade. This advanced technology not only saves time but also increases the accuracy of inspections, making Ukraine’s borders more secure and more efficient.

“The European Union’s unwavering commitment to Ukraine’s border security and trade facilitation is evident in today’s donation. This act underscores our dedication to assist Ukraine in bolstering its border management capabilities and ensuring the smooth movement of goods and people. Our collaboration with Ukraine is a testament to the enduring partnership and solidarity between the EU and Ukraine”, emphasised Asier Santillan, Head of Section for European Integration, Governance and Rule of Law, Civil Society at the European Union Delegation to Ukraine, at the handover ceremony.

X-ray scanners are crucial for customs operations as they allow for the non-intrusive inspection of goods and cargo. The Rapiscan Eagle M60 mobile scanner, with its advanced imaging capabilities, significantly speeds up the inspection process, making it possible to make primary inspection decisions in just a few minutes.

Radim Zak, Head of Region at ICMPD highlighted: “Integration of this state-of-the-art scanner will significantly boost the efficiency and accuracy of customs inspections at the Ukrainian border. This is a crucial step in modernising the country’s border control processes and aligning them with European standards”.

The delivered scanner not only saves time but also enhances the accuracy of inspections. Reducing the need for physical checks prevents potential damage to goods and speeds up the overall process, benefiting both customs operations and trade activities.

ICMPD has collaborated closely with the Ukrainian Customs delving into the technical specifics to tailor the device precisely to the needs of the Customs service. The project introduces advanced features such as automatic detection of weapons, centralized capability for image interpretation support, and readiness for cross-border X-ray image exchange with neighboring countries. The device is also prepared for interlinking with customs systems for automatic data exchange”, explained Janno Ratsep, ICMPD short-term technical expert on x-ray equipment.

To ensure the effective use of the X-ray scanner, the EU4IBM-Resilience project will organise specialised training programs for customs officers. These include a 7-day Operator and Image Analysis training course in Ukraine and a 5-day Maintenance and Service training course in the UK. These programmes aim to equip customs officers with the necessary skills to operate, make optimal use, and ensure proper handling of the new scanners.

“This donation is part of our broader strategy to improve border security and trade facilitation in Ukraine. By equipping the border crossing points with the latest technology and providing comprehensive training for Ukrainian customs officers, we are helping our partners to create a more secure and efficient border management system”, commented Vyacheslav Toporov, EU4IBM-Resilience Senior Project Manager.

The procurement and delivery of the Rapiscan Eagle M60 scanner in Chop is only one part of the “Solidarity Lanes” activities implemented by the EU4IBM-Resilience project. Two more Eagle M60 scanning systems will be delivered, alongside appropriate training, by January 2025. Additionally, the project works on delivery of uninterrupted power supplies for stationary cargo vehicles scanners located in other border crossing points, to ensure their integrity and functioning in the situation of unstable electricity supply and blackouts.

The project also delivers a series of trainings focused on advancing the capabilities of Ukrainian customs officials in reading and interpreting images generated by stationary cargo X-ray scanners, which helps reduce security risks, violations of customs rules, and the illicit movement of goods at border crossing points.

The measures implemented by the EU4IBM-Sustainability project as part of the “Solidarity Lanes” also include procurement and installation of weighing complexes for cargo vehicles. Those will contribute to strengthening customs controls and speeding up decision making by customs officials.

The Solidarity Lanes, established in May 2022 to bypass Russia’s blockade of Ukraine’s usual transport routes, allow Ukraine and Moldova to export their goods to world markets via the EU while also ensuring crucial imports reach Ukraine. Within this framework, the European Commission, together with authorities and partners in the EU, Ukraine and Moldova work together to identify ways to remove administrative and infrastructure bottlenecks. Key priorities include improving traffic management and border procedures, and supporting investments in infrastructure and logistics equipment like mobile scanners.

 

 

Background information: The project “EU Support to Strengthening Integrated Border Management in Ukraine –Resilience (EU4IBM-Resilience)” is funded by the EU and implemented by the International Centre for Migration Policy Development (ICMPD). The project is aimed at building the resilience of the Ukrainian border management agencies during wartime, as well as supporting further reforms to approximate the border management system of Ukraine to the EU standards and best practices in line with the Integrated Border Management Strategy of Ukraine adopted by the Cabinet of Ministers on 24 July 2019. The project runs from December 2022 until May 2025.

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The EU4IBM project team includes international technical assistance professionals and subject matter experts from Ukraine and the European Union who work on a daily basis to support the border management agencies of Ukraine in the time of war, as well as to further assist in the implementation of national reforms that bring the Ukrainian border management system closer to the standards and best practices of integrated border management. Support our work by sharing our official page on social networks

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