Yannis Xenakis

Yannis XENAKIS studied public law and political science in Athens, Greece; economic analysis and international economics in Canterbury, Kent, UK; European economics and development economics in Nancy, France; and European economics and law in Bruges, Belgium. He is fluent in English and French, in addition to his native language, Greek.

Yannis XENAKIS was an official in the European Commission for thirty-five years. He held the following posts:

  • Economics department. Official: contributions to the creation of the European Economic and Monetary Union and the introduction of the euro.
  • European Anti-Fraud Office/OLAF. Head of Unit for the Protection of the Euro against fraud and counterfeiting: legislative initiatives, programme management and technical analyses. He prepared and successfully negotiated a Commission proposal for a Regulation rendering it mandatory for financial institutions to verify the authenticity of the euro banknotes and coins before distributing them to their clients.
  • European Anti-Fraud Office/OLAF. Acting Director for Policy, then Head of Unit for Customs Anti-Fraud Policy: analysis of fraud, legislative initiatives, negotiation with Member States and third countries, organisation of Joint Customs Operations and management of IT mechanisms for mutual assistance in customs. He chaired the EU Committee for Mutual Assistance in Customs and the Anti-Fraud Sub-Committee of the Joint Customs Cooperation Committee with China. He introduced innovative practices in the joint actions with Member States, such as the involvement of tax authorities in customs operations; and promoted cooperation China, in particular through its active participation, for the first time, in joint operations with EU Member States and the Commission. He managed the preparation and negotiation at the European Parliament and the Council, of the Commission proposal for amendment of the basic Regulation 515/97 on mutual assistance in customs, in which provisions were inserted enhancing the possibilities for detection of fraud and reinforcing cooperation.

Since his retirement, in November 2014, Yannis XENAKIS is involved in academic activity.