Conference Call

Flag of Poland

Warsaw, 11 March 2009

Dear Madam/Sir,
Frontex is a key player in the field of operational border control cooperation at the external borders of EU. One of the main duties of the agency is to assist and support Member States and Schengen Associated Countries in the field of management of external borders. In this respect, maritime domain is at the same time very interesting and challenging. The key words which apply to the maritime borders are inter-agency cooperation and multi-functional performance.

In order to bring into practice the initiative originally launched by the Hellenic Coast Guard and the Finnish Border Guard, a conference for the Heads of Coast Guards of the European Union Member States and the Schengen Associated Countries and relevant EU bodies is arranged.

I am glad to welcome one representative from your institution in Warsaw on 22 -23 April 2009.

The purpose of the conference, which would become a regular forum composed of the Commandants of the Coast Guard authorities of the Member States and the Schengen Associated Countries, is to build up a "melting pot" for maritime practitioners to develop a joint approach to the future challenges in the fields of maritime border security, maritime safety, environmental and other security related issues as well as to enhance coordination FRONTEX and coherence of the activities of the Member States and relevant EU bodies.
I am convinced that we are going to benefit from getting together and would like to ask for your contribution on these very important topics.

Please find enclosed a draft programme of the conference. If you have any proposals regarding guest speakers at the conference and topics in the draft programme, do not hesitate to contact us.

Yours sincerely,
Ilkka Laitinen
Executive Director

© Forum of the Heads of the Coast Guards
Functions of the European Union and
Schengen associated countries