The Ministry of Interior hosted the 107th Management Board Meeting of the EU Agency for Law Enforcement Cooperation (Europol) that was held on 3 and 4 May in Sofia. The first meeting since the official start of Catherine De Bolle’s term of office as Executive Director of the Agency took place a as part of the calendar of the Bulgarian Presidency of the Council of the EU.
Representatives of the EU Member States, Denmark (with an observer status) and the European Commission reviewed the operational activities and the results achieved in key areas, and approved the Annual Report for 2017.
In his opening speech, the Bulgarian Minister of Interior Valentin Radev highlighted Europol’s key role in the implementation of the EU Policy Cycle for organised and serious international crime:
"The Agency has become the driving force that unites and coordinates the efforts of the national law enforcement authorities. Along with the up-to-date and quality information, Europol provides a wide range of tools of crucial importance to the police services,"
Radev emphasised the practical importance of the Joint Action Days that are becoming more efficient each year.
De Bolle said that Europol’s focus should remain on supporting Member States in fighting increasingly complex and global security threats.
“We need to go beyond the current thinking and build a Europol that can respond even better to the needs and concerns of Member States and Europol’s partners,“
she said, adding that it is important to use the Agency’s resources in the best way possible to ensure Europol’s services are seen as being central to the joint response.
The Management Board discussed current strategic and corporate matters and adopted decisions related to the future activities of the Agency aimed at facilitating the Member States’ efforts in countering serious and organised crime and terrorism. A special focus was put on the cooperation with the Joint Parliamentary Scrutiny Group (JPSG), which was represented for the first time at a Management Board meeting.