Malta allocated a further €12 million for Frontex equipment

EU funds to help Maltese armed forces acquire an additional fixed wing aircraft

The new helicopters will replace the Alouette IIIs which are operated by the AFM at the moment.
The new helicopters will replace the Alouette IIIs which are operated by the AFM at the moment.

Malta has been allocated an additional €12,600,000 in EU funds for the purchase of an additional fixed wing aircraft.

Parliament secretary for EU funds Ian Borg said that Malta was allocated the funds following a call for proposals for the purchase of Frontex equipment under the ISF-Borders Specific actions.

This additional allocation will bring the total amount of EU funds earmarked for Malta for the period between 2014 – 2020 under the Asylum, Migration and Integration Fund as well as under the Internal Security Fund to €92 million euro.

These funds will be used to continue to strengthen the Armed Forces of Malta, the Malta Police Force, the Civil Protections Department, Malta’s Security Services, Malta Foreign Affairs and the Customs Department in their fight against crime especially cross-border crime and in their monitoring of Malta’s borders.

Various pieces of equipment are envisaged to be purchased, such as an additional helicopter which will continue to enhance AFM’s air fleet which was recently improved through the procurement of a further 2 twin-engine helicopters part-financed through the External Borders Fund.

These helicopters will replace the Alouette IIIs which are operated by the AFM at the moment. Various surveillance systems will also be upgraded and procured to assist both the AFM and the Police Force.

Upgrades are also envisaged to software utilised by the Police and the Malta Security Services to monitor cross-border crimes. The HAZMAT unit within the Civil Protection Department is envisaged to be enhanced with new equipment and technical training, while scanning equipment will be provided to the Customs Department.

Assistance will be provided to finance material aid and services given in open centres and closed centres, to increase reception facilities for irregular migrants and to set up a specialised health unit, while further improvements in the capacity of the Office of the Commissioner for Refugees are envisaged.

Assistance will also be used to continue to finance voluntary and forced return actions, with which migrants are assisted to return back to their country of origin.

Borg said that the €92million obtained will therefore continue to build on the various actions which are currently being implemented under the current Funds envisaged to be completed by June 2015.

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