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Centre for Analysis and Planning
1. Legal Framework
Under its current form, the Analysis and Planning Centre (APC) was established by Law 2594/1998 (Gov. Gaz. , 62/24-3-1998) concerning the Statutes of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA). According to Article 12, the APC is an independent research unit directly answerable to the Minister of Foreign Affairs and its main mandate is to analyse foreign policy and international relations issues in order to formulate forecasts and proposals on political and diplomatic tactics.
2. Responsibilities and working method
According to the MFAs statutes, the APC:
• draws up detailed plans on the medium and long-term objectives of Greek foreign policy and drafts reports on alternative methods for supporting and implementing the policy;
• studies specific issues;
• draws up crisis management plans;
• monitors and supports the work of the Parliaments Permanent Committee for
Foreign Affairs and Defence, and Permanent Committee for European Affairs. It equally monitors and supports the work of several advisory bodies on foreign policy issues that have been established either by law or by other regulatory acts, such as the National Inter-party Committee on foreign policy (Law 2333/31-8-1995, Gov. Gaz. 182 ) and the Scientific Council (Article 27 of the Statutes).
The very nature of its mission brings the APC into close daily co-operation with MFA Directorates and with Diplomatic Authorities abroad, since it receives requests for in-depth analysis of special issues concerning the countrys foreign policy. It follows that in contrast to the Directorates, which are mandated with monitoring current issues, often of an urgent character, the APC approaches such issues under a mid/long-term perspective. This differentiation reflects the difference between the mission of the APC and the missions of other, more traditional, MFA departments.
Another aspect of the APCs daily activity concerns its co-operation with research and other institutes (e.g. Universities), think tanks, and foreign policy experts working either in Greece or abroad. This co-operation often leads to think tanks and/or Universities being entrusted with research, to joint activities and drafting of policy papers, or to events being organised (seminars, meetings, etc.).
The APC is active at the international level. In this context, it has organized a number of international meetings in Greece on specific foreign policy issues with the participation of think tanks and other institutions, and of foreign experts. Finally, it systematically seeks to promote contacts and co-operation with similar centres operating under the Ministries of Foreign Affairs of other countries.
3. Institutional Involvement of the APC in other bodies Additional responsibilities of the APC Director
According to the Statutes of the MFA, the Director of the APC is an employee of the diplomatic branch with the rank of consul and is appointed to the post by the Minister of Foreign Affairs. It is part of his responsibilities to submit to the Minister of Foreign Affairs the findings of studies and/or of overall research carried out by the APC, often accompanied by an introductory note written by the Director himself. Moreover, he assumes, on an ad hoc basis, other missions related to specific issues of Greek foreign policy. Thus, in addition to its main mission, the APC is involved, through its head, in the works of other agencies:
• In the Permanent Joint Unit for Crisis Management, which, in spite of its interministerial composition, is an integral part of the MFA (Statutes, Article 13), and whose mission is to contribute to the readiness of the state to respond to and manage crises, through, inter alia, organizing exercises based on the forecasts using the APCs analyses. The Unit is also entrusted with monitoring the implementation of governmental decisions related to its area of responsibility.
• In the National Council for Foreign Policy (NCFP) which was established by Article 82, para. 4 of the Constitution, as amended in 2001. The law establishing it, 3132/2003 Gov. Gaz. A. 84/11-4-2003, provides for the composition and the mission of the NCFP, where the Head of the APC participates ex officio, while another officer of the Centre acts as secretary.
Finally, the Scientific Director is responsible for providing scientific support to the APC, supervising all scientific work conducted by the Centre and acting as co-ordinator between his associates and the university and research community in general. He also oversees the elaboration and drafting of policy proposals submitted to the Minister of Foreign Affairs.