Agencies Discuss European Coastguard Project

The closing workshop of the pilot project “Creation of a European coastguard function” was held on June 2, when three European agencies presented the results of the project.

Namely, the European Border and Coast Guard Agency (Frontex), the European Fisheries Control Agency (EFCA) and European Maritime Safety Agency (EMSA) jointly presented their results during the event which gathered more than 110 participants from various European and national entities in Lisbon.

The 18 months pilot project was launched in January 2016 in order to provide the test bed for the cooperation mechanism proposed by the Commission within the framework of the European border and coastguard package.

The project aimed to raise cross-sectorial awareness of Frontex, EMSA and EFCA’s activities between the three Agencies and amongst pilot project stakeholders and to create operational and technical synergies between different coastguard functions at EU level.

In the framework of the project the three agencies explored and tested ways to further enhance their cooperation in sharing of information generated by fusing and analysing vessel movement and earth observation data, and providing surveillance and communication services based on state-of-the-art technology. Additionally, the agencies explored capacity building, as well as capacity sharing including multipurpose operations and the sharing of assets and capabilities across sectors and borders.

In March 2017, the parties signed a Tripartite Working Arrangement in an effort to strengthen their cooperation on coast guard functions.

The agreement sets out the framework for the synergy between the European agencies which will enable them to support in “an effective and cost-efficient way” the activities of more than 300 civilian and military authorities in the EU member states.