The OSCE supported the annual general meeting of the Balkan Asset Management Interagency Network (BAMIN) on 26 November 2020, bringing together representatives of national asset management and asset recovery offices of sixteen jurisdictions (14 BAMIN member and three guest jurisdictions), together with officials from the BAMIN Secretariat and the OSCE.
Opening the meeting, Anica Vucekovic, representative of the Property Administration of Montenegro, the country that currently holds the BAMIN Presidency, highlighted efforts this year to keep the network active, despite COVID-19-related challenges. Officials of the BAMIN Secretariat presented an overview of the main activities carried out during 2020 as well as updates on BAMIN’s membership and the future BAMIN Presidency. Since 2017, the number of BAMIN members has significantly increased to 14 jurisdictions.
The meeting covered legal and structural changes to asset management systems as well as success stories.
The OSCE supports BAMIN through an extra-budgetary project to strengthen the fight against transnational crime in South-Eastern Europe through improved regional co-operation in asset seizure, confiscation, management and re-use.
Denise Mazzolani, Deputy Head of Strategic Police Matters Unit at the OSCE Secretariat’s Transnational Threats Department (TNTD), and co-manager of this project, commended BAMIN for finding innovative ways to exchange best practices and experiences, and working towards expanding the Network.
Iris Pilika, Programme Officer at the the Office of the Co-ordinator of OSCE Economic and Environmental Activities (OCEEA), and co-manager of the project, updated participants on the activities carried out in the framework of the regional asset recovery project and highlighted the importance of the asset management component in asset recovery, and the role BAMIN members and asset management agencies can play in the whole asset recovery cycle.
This extra-budgetary project is jointly implemented by TNTD and the OCEEA. The cross-dimensional initiative adopts a comprehensive approach by providing support during the entire cycle of asset seizure, management and re-use.
The United States Department of State, Italy, Germany and the United Kingdom support the project financially.