Bus Search training on a strategic border strip

Here, where the U.S. President Joe Biden, President of the European Commission Ursula von der Leyen and U2 leader Bono have crossed the land border, learners of CELBET training had a chance to improve and test their skills.


Over half a thousand kilometers long, surprising smuggling stories and the most strategic border zone in Europe nowadays – Polish border with Ukraine. The land border that marks the beginning and the end of the European Union. It is also a border zone where customs officers from all over Europe improve their competences in combating cross-border crimes. One of the ways of the skills’ development is a Bus Search training. Last one was organized from 21-23 of May in Przemyśl, Poland. Thanks to the support of the National Revenue Academy in Przemyśl,  few years ago,CELBET  has created Center of Expertise on bus search there.

Seventeen customs officers from 10 countries: Austria, Croatia, Denmark, Greece, Latvia, Poland, Serbia, Slovakia, Sweden and Hungary learned how effectively inspect buses, according to the trainers’ motto: work smart – not hard !


Mateusz Fac, Robert Szewczyk, Wojciech Narkun from Poland and Jeno Csaki from Hungary are experienced trainers who have prepared tailored theoretical and practical training, including real – world environmental education part: at the border crossing point. Thanks to the location of the Center of Expertise in Przemyśl, the participants trained at the Polish-Ukrainian crossing point in Medyka.


The visit on the Medyka BCP started with a short tour, showing learners how is the border infrastructure organized and how the National Revenue Administration officers provide the inspection.

Trainees have been divided into 2 groups. One was checking buses on the lane and the other one have been controlling minibuses and luggages in a detailed control building.


Medyka BCP is one of the strategic points on the EU external border. Shortly,  after Russia attacked Ukraine, 36 000 of passengers during 24 hours shift have been crossing the border. Before the war, it was 4 000.

Bus Search training attracted attention of local Polish Television and Polish Radio and as a result evening news presented the event.


All participants agreed,  that the location of the event and the opportunity to train on one of the most strategic zone of the EU external border, were an additional factor encouraging participation.

 – Thanks to CELBET training, I have got new approach to the control. Today, a smuggler doesn’t  look like a gangster, but like a typical tourist, a traveler who seems to be innocent, which is very often deceptive – explained Sanja Żuvela from Croatia.

Kennie Svensson from Sweden appreciated wide range of training materials presented by the trainers:

– Thanks to the well-prepared practical part, I saw how creative smugglers can be. These hiding places and technical solutions are truly valuable knowledge that I will definitely share with my colleagues in Sweden.


This was the sixth international Bus Search training in Przemyśl, organized by CELBET and National Revenue Administration of Poland.

In total, from the beginning of the Bus Search training sessions, 123 officers from 23 countries have been trained: 19 EU countries and 4 third countries: Ukraine, Moldova, Serbia and Turkey.

What is Center of Expertise ?

A physical or virtual place where the expertise of EU experts are collected:


  • providing international trainings;
  • managing the experts’ network;
  • giving advice;
  • developing and sharing training materials;
  • providing experts;
  • organising regular meetings for the trainers, experts.

The Centers of Expertise are financed by CLEP; national budget; other sources.

Only two of 11 CELBET Member States have two Centers of Expertise: Poland and Slovakia. Center of Expertise on Bus Search is one of many centers located in Eastern and Southern Europe. In Poland, apart from the Center in Przemyśl, CELBET has also launched Center of Expertise on X-ray in Gdańsk.