Border Management and Security Programme

#Border Management and Security #Border Management #Integrated Border Management #Border Management Policy #Customs #Document Security

The Border Management and Security Programme (BMS) is ICMPD’s hub for all questions and topics related to Border Management and Security.


About the Border Management and Security Programme (BMS)

Border management should not only be defined by the security approach, but address economic and social development, trade and relations and role of border communities as a whole.

The BMS programme facilitates cooperation and coordination on the interagency, intra-service and international levels, which together form the basis of the 3-pillar model of Integrated Border Management.

Further supporting the concept of IBM, the BMS programme carries out strategy and policy development, designs country-specific and tailor-made strategic approaches, and finds linkages in migration patterns to identify synergies between border security and migration governance. These types of projects will be regularly highlighted on our page. Watch out for vacancies for staff and experts that will be posted here as well.

Our bottom line is that border crossing should strive at all times to be secure, well-organised and smooth for all bona-fide travellers and trade, and we intend to share content always promoting this goal, and situate BMS as the competent partner to achieve this.

What We Do

Strategic and Policy Support:  

The BMS Programme brings strategic expertise to advise high-senior officials and decision-makers (from the relevant ministries such as Ministries of Interior, Ministries of Finance, Ministries of Defence, Local Governorates, etc.) on all the various aspects of border management, mobility, trade facilitation and migration governance policies. In addition, supporting the drafting of national IBM guidelines and border management strategies for States in need is a key element of our work.

Capacity Building and Training:

The BMS Programme supports governments in the provision of technical assistance and the development of training curricula on a wide-range of border management-related topics, such as strategic planning, joint patrolling, document security, vehicle search, etc., which we also make available by distance through the development of fully-fledged e-learning platforms. Support is tailored to many different audiences, from the highest level of strategic planning, to the local level field officers, to the agents of technical operations.

Provision of Equipment / Tendering:

Another focal point in our work is the provision of equipment for border agencies through procurement and public tendering.  The BMS Programme has procured a wide-range of equipment, services and works to the beneficiary countries, ranging from refurbishing training centres to equipping control rooms with IT equipment (hardware and software), developing maritime surveillance software, a mobile application for Customs and even the provision of K9 detection dogs. ICMPD is accredited by the European Union to conduct procurement on its behalf.




The Border Management & Security (BMS) Programme of ICMPD chiefly supports border and migration-related agencies in institutional development and capacity-building activities. We create tailor-made solutions for the optimal management of borders and improved security, and additionally contribute to policy development by promoting external cooperation possibilities within the concept of Integrated Border Management (IBM) for European Commission external cooperation.

For nearly two decades, the BMS team has been involved in multinational, bilateral and EU-level projects with a history of success across the globe, including but not limited to the EU itself, the Western Balkans and Turkey, South Eastern Europe, the Southern Caucasus, Central Asia and North Africa, as well as in-creasing activities and presence in the Middle East, West Africa, South America and South East Asia. Our initiatives have been focused on the following areas:

  • Cooperation with border guards and border police, customs agencies and other state services
  • Developing national IBM strategies and action plans
  • Assessing laws, bylaws, agreements, etc. for continual improvement and updates
  • Developing Standard Operating Procedures for border crossing points (BCPs), whether on land, sea or air
  • Introducing anti-corruption measures and raising anti-corruption awareness,
  • Anti-fraud and other detection measures to increase quality of border checks at BCPS
  • Building advanced training systems, including the development of training curricula, manuals, e-learning tools and the training of trainers (ToT) and staff with a long-term impact and sustainability
  • Promoting IBM principles and EU good practices
  • Developing clear, tailored strategies for document security, risk analysis, profiling and early warning systems
  • Enhancing the interagency dialogue for information ex-change at all levels of government through the development of IT and real-time communication systems
  • Project management at the operational, strategic and financial levels

Integrated Border Management

The concept of IBM is a cornerstone of EU migration policy and lies at the core of BMS activities. Developed to enhance border security and to prevent irregular migration and cross-border crime, IBM also seeks to ensure smooth border crossings for legitimate travellers. In a more comprehensive approach, the focus of IBM was expanded to include trade facilitation. BMS activities also include the elaboration of policy documents such as tailored training manuals for various stakeholders, which are used in policy development, not just within the EU, but in third countries throughout the international border management dialogue

The overall objective of “open but secure borders” is sought by enabling joint coordination and cooperation as follows:

  • intra-service cooperation within border services
  • inter-agency cooperation between the involved agencies or ministries
  • international cooperation on a bilateral or multilateral level

Coordination between entities reduces costs and provides the government with a better overview on national border management, contributing to a holistic approach to border management and security.

"What is Integrated Border Management?" - The video was produced by the Project “IBM Lebanon Phase II”, with the financial support of the European Union.


Geographic focus and presence:

The BMS programme has extended its geographical scope of activities over the past several years, and particularly its presence on-the-ground. While several projects in the Eastern Partnership countries are sustaining their successful and ongoing implementation.

ICMPD supports governments and border management agencies in strengthening their national systems notably, but not exclusively, in EU Accession and European Neighbourhood countries. In the NEAR area of responsibility, here are some of the countries where ICMPD runs/ran border management projects:

  • Albania
  • Ghana
  • Jordan
  • Lebanon
  • Morocco
  • Tunisia
  • Ukraine
  • …and in many other regions (Africa, Silk routes..,)

Multilevel and pluri-disciplinary approach:

Most of the actions implemented have a strong focus on Integrated Border Management and facilitate promotion of European, International and possibly local good practices supporting strengthening of national border management systems’ efficiency and effectiveness.

BMS related projects:

EU Support for the effective management of green and blue borders in Albania (EU4SAFEALB)

EU Support to Strengthening IBM in Ukraine (EU4IBM)

EU support to Integrated Border Management in Jordan (IBM Jordan)

Document Security Jordan

Support Programme to Integrated Border Management in Tunisia – Phase II (IBM Tunisia II)

Support Programme for the Tunisian Government in the field of Integrated Border Management (IBM Tunisia – Phase III)

Strengthening Border Security in Ghana (SBS Ghana)

Strengthening Border and Migration Management in Ghana (SMMIG)

Strengthening Capability for Integrated Border Management in Lebanon (EU IBM Lebanon Phase III)

The promotional movie of our work, produced within the framework of the Project “EU Support for the effective management of green and blue borders in Albania (#EU4SAFEALB)”.

VMC 2020: BMS Focus Session on "Preventing a domino effect - Border management in external shocks"

BMS activities in pictures

Contact us


Head of Programme