IMPEL National Peer Review Initiative (NPRI) Meeting in Romania
08 Dec, 2023
An NPRI meeting was held in Bucharest, Romania on November 15-17, 2023, as a follow-up to the successful stakeholder consultation held in Oradea in February 2023.
Twenty-three people attended the meeting, seventeen of whom represented Romanian stakeholders in the National Peer Review. These included the General Inspectorate of the Romanian Police (IGPR), the Romanian Border Police (IGPF), the National Environmental Agency (ANPM), the Romanian Customs Agency (AVR), the Ministry of Environment, Water and Forests (MMAP), the Environmental Fund Administration (AFM) and the Romanian National Environmental Guard (RNEG). The Public Prosecutor's Office should also be mentioned, but overlapping commitments prevented its participation in the event. The meeting was also attended by six colleagues from four countries, namely Italy (including the IMPEL NPRI Project Manager), the Netherlands, Greece and Portugal.
The Romanian NPRI aims to improve the control of transboundary movements of waste and goods at risk of being waste disguised as second-hand goods or personal effects. In particular, the harmonization and alignment of procedures for carrying out inspections by the competent services and the further strengthening of cooperation between them are key objectives of the project. In this context, it is the common ambition of the stakeholders to develop a multifunctional guide for the inspection of cross-border transport, with a common and synchronized approach for all actors involved. The basis for the development of such a guide was laid during the meeting in Oradea in February 2023. It was agreed that this guide will be aligned with the recently developed Prosecutor's Guidelines. The results of the NPRI project should also lead to the identification of affordable and rapidly deployable technical rules and solutions to the many problems associated with cross border inspections.
Participants at the meeting exchanged information on the progress of the project, steps taken so far and discussed follow-up steps. An important outcome of the project is the drafting, in close cooperation between RNEG and the Consumer Protection Agency (ANPC), of a so-called "ordonnance", which provides clarity on how to deal with the interpretation of waste, such as: not waste, product, no product, raw material or simply not. The collaboration between RNEG and ANPC was initiated by the NPRI project.
Stakeholders noted that the (imminent) accession of Romania to the Schengen area could have an impact and significantly change the current situation of inspections at border crossing points. This includes changes in the inspection approach and in the cooperation between the stakeholders involved. The Romanian NPRI project provides an excellent basis for examining the consequences and developing appropriate solutions.
During the meeting, some participating countries also reported on their initiatives and progress in implementing an NPRI. Reports were received from Italy and the Netherlands, as well as from other IMPEL members such as the Portuguese CCDR-A and the Greek Ombudsman.
Further work up to 2023 was discussed, including visits to Portugal and Serbia. Finally, the basics of the NPRI program for 2024 were explained, including (follow-up) activities in Slovakia, Greece, Kosovo, Albania, Romania, Italy and the Netherlands. The project team also agreed on a presented concept and description for the continuation of the project in the period 2025-2027, given the successful implementation of the NPRI project in the participating and interested countries.
For further information, please contact NPRI Project Managers.