The project, as a part of a European Union (EU) grant, was implemented in close partnership with UNHCR and OSCE. It intended to assist the Government of Albania assume full responsibility for managing its asylum system in the context of widespread irregular migration – an objective which necessarily requires a holistic approach to migration management. Project objectives aimed to consolidate and develop existing procedures for the referral of asylum-seekers, irregular migrants and trafficked persons. The project provided training to improve the efficiency of the pre-screening procedure and its function within Albania’s migration management strategy. Furthermore, it facilitated the implementation of asylum and migration policy and helped to ensure the overall sustainability of the intervention. The project helped to raise the profile of migration management and to encourage the perception of asylum and migration issues as important at both national and regional levels, and from political and operational standpoints.
Project partners were UNHCR (leading partner), IOM and OSCE. IOM was engaged in Police Training (Border Police) as well as cross border workshops and training of personnel at the National Reception Centre. Reception Centres at border police points were also refurbished, and resources, facilities and training were provided to improve and support the National Reception Centre. IOM was also involved in the pre-screening of irregular migrants and third country national victims of trafficking (VoT) and assisted voluntary return (AVR). The project began in April 2004 and was completed in March 2006, with the signing of the MoU on prescreening procedures handover by the international partners and Albanian Ministry of Interior.