Exchange Programme 2009 Initial Conference

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08 October 2009

The Initial Conference of the CEPOL Exchange Programme 2009/2010 was held in Budapest, Hungary, on 29-30 September 2009. The conference was organised by the Hungarian CEPOL Team and the CEPOL Secretariat whilst hosted by the Ministry of Justice and Law Enforcement (MoJLe) International Training Centre. Nominated exchangees and tutors, National Exchange Coordinators and the programme’s Project Reference Group were invited to attend. A total of 97 participants took part in the conference.

During the opening speech made by the Swedish E.U. Presidency represented by Bo Astrom, the Exchange Programme 2009/10 was introduced as being of paramount importance for CEPOL. Mr. Astrom also went on to say: “This programme is a core task for CEPOL according to the Council Decision establishing CEPOL and CEPOL will be demanded to develop it even further when the Stockholm programme will come into force.”

“It is a great pleasure for us to support this activity” said Detlef Schroeder, Head of Programme from CEPOL Secretariat, “where officers get a very good inside view of the police work in other European countries and the chance to build up their own international professional networks.”

Michiel Holtackers, Chair of the CEPOL Annual Programme Committee, during his opening address remarked: “The Exchange Programme of CEPOL for 2009 and 2010 contributes to developing the human interface to networking of police officers within the EU, creating a better understanding of mutual approaches to policing and thereby enhancing cross border police cooperation”.

Members of staff from the CEPOL Secretariat presented the structure and the aims of the programme to the new participants as well as e-Net, an electronic tool to strengthen professional networks and support the implementation of the exchange periods. Two former participants, Belen Crego Sanchez (Spain) and Agnes Nemeth (Hungary) were invited to present their experience with the Exchange Programme and advise new participants on important issues regarding preparation and implementation of the exchanges.

On the first day of the conference the participants established professional networks and discussed the new developments in their fields of expertise divided in three groups according to the priority topics. They also discussed and summarised their objectives and expectations related to the exchanges. National Exchange Coordinators had a separate session where they discussed administrative regulations, procedures and reimbursement rules.

The second day of the conference was dedicated mainly to the preparation of the hosting plans, therefore exchangees and tutors had individual consultations for the two exchange periods wherein they prepared hosting plans and agreed on the dates for the exchanges.

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