Bringing Azerbaijani and EU citizens closer together
The International Centre for Migration Policy Development (ICMPD) presented the new EU-funded project “Support to the Implementation of the Mobility Partnership with Azerbaijan (MOBILAZE)” in Baku at the kick-off and coordination meeting of the project.
The 36 months project is funded by the European Union and implemented by the International Centre for Migration Policy Development in cooperation with the partner-institutions from the EU MS – signatories of the Mobility Partnership with Azerbaijan (Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Latvia, Lithuania, the Netherlands, Poland, and Slovakia) and relevant Azerbaijani state institutions, such as the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, State Migration Service, State Border Service, Ministry of Labour and Social Protection of Population, Ministry of Education and Baku State University.
The overall objective of the project is to support the implementation of the Mobility Partnership between the EU and Azerbaijan with a specific focus on strengthening the capacity of the government to develop and implement the national migration policy.
During opening remarks, Ambassador Malena Mard, Head of the EU Delegation to Azerbaijan, highlighted the 25 years of close collaboration between the EU and Azerbaijan noting that particularly since 2005 significant work had been done in the field of migration including projects implemented so far with Azerbaijan. She added that the Mobility Partnership Declaration signed with Azerbaijan in 2013 is another important step towards bringing European and Azerbaijani citizens closer.
Addressing the meeting, Mr. Seymur Mardaliyev, the Deputy Director of the Department for Humanitarian and Social Affairs of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Azerbaijan, stressed the importance of the project and elaborated on close cooperation between Azerbaijan and the EU in the field of migration management, border management, readmission and prevention of irregular migration.
Ms. Violeta Wagner, ICMPD Project Coordinator, presented the project’s objectives, its components and key activities, followed by the feedback of representatives from Azerbaijani authorities on their priorities. She also informed all participants about official ICMPD office opening in Baku in April 2016, as well as recruitment of the ICMPD national project staff which will strengthen ICMPD cooperation with the Azerbaijani migration authorities and increase ICMPD presence in the country. The ICMPD HQ and national project team will be responsible for the implementation of the project in close cooperation with Azerbaijani state institutions.
Representatives of partner state agencies in Azerbaijan, the EU Delegation to Azerbaijan and the ICMPD project implementing team discussed the initial findings of the project’s inception phase. The event gave an opportunity to the stakeholders to exchange on the modalities of the project’s implementation in a greater detail and to define further areas of cooperation.