MESSAGES FROM LATIN AMERICA AND THE CARIBBEAN FOR THE SECOND HIGH LEVEL DIALOGUE ON INTERNATIONAL MIGRATION AND DEVELOPMENT Rapporteur’s report* *
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ECA, in collaboration with IOM, has organized a Regional Experts Meeting on International Migration and Development in Africa on 3-4 July 2013.
International Labour Organisation, African Union Commission, Inter-
Addis Ababa, 01 July 2013 (ECA) – In partnership with the International Organization for Migration and the African Union Commission, the Economic Commission for Africa will hold a regional experts meeting on international migration and development in Africa. The meeting will take place in the United Nations Conference Centre, Addis Ababa on 3-4 July, 2013. The experts’ meeting is aimed at providing regional consultation for the Second High Level Dialogue on International Migration and Development to be held in October 2013.
The regional experts meeting will be conducted in the form of consultation and dialogue in 6 sessions covering the following themes: Mainstreaming Migration into Development Plans and Strategies, International and Regional Labor Mobility and its impacts on development, Strengthening Partnerships and cooperation on international migration, and Measures to ensure respect for and protection of the human rights of all migrants, with particular reference to woman and children.
According to the organizers, migration is a prominent factor in development policy, as reflected in the emergence of new institutional structures, knowledge sharing, global research, policy dialogue, and bilateral and multilateral agreements. In Africa migration is a mega trend that is gaining more interest and concern of policy-makers and planners, as a force for economic and social development, and for regional integration in the continent.
Migration has become a priority area for management and actions to promote the welfare of individuals, their families and the societies where they usually live and the ones they move to for better living. In recent years, migration and development have become an important agenda in the bilateral and multilateral relations between countries and regional blocks, and between intergovernmental bodies, such as the regional economic communities.
In 2006, the United Nations High-Level Dialogue (HLD) on International Migration and Development was held in New York. Following up to this, the UN General Assembly mandated the regional commissions to contribute and coordinate similar dialogues at the regional level in preparation for the next High-level Dialogue on International Migration in 2013. In order to undertake this mandate, the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA) organized the first Africa Regional Dialogue on International Migration under the theme “Cooperation and Policy Dialogue for Regional Integration”. The Regional Dialogue was important in bringing coherence to issues of migration and development, especially since views from member states were exchanged and best practices on migration policymaking and initiatives were shared.
In October 2013, the United Nations General Assembly will hold its second High-Level Dialogue on International Migration and Development, which will focus on the theme of “Identifying concrete measures to strengthen coherence and cooperation at all levels, with a view to enhancing the benefits of international migration for migrants and countries alike and its important links to development, while reducing its negative implications”. The United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (ESCWA) the International Organization for Migration (IOM), and the League of Arab States (LAS), recognizing the importance and specific contribution of international migration for development in the Arab region, the potential benefits that Arab experiences can bring to the High-Level Dialogue’s deliberations and the consequent importance of ensuring Arab countries are able to make their voices heard at this important event, have decided to seize this opportunity to organize a two-day Regional Consultative Meeting (RCM) on International Migration and Development from 4-5 June 2013.
The RCM will be a two day-long participatory, consultative process, engaging Government officials from Arab countries to come to common understandings on current and future migration and development challenges and opportunities, and the actions required at the national, regional and global levels to maximize the benefits and minimize the potential negative impacts of migratory trends. Civil society actors, academics, and international organizations will provide expert support and help guide the discussions. An outcome statement will be agreed by participants at the RCM to be presented during the plenary session of the High-Level Dialogue in New York.
Under the theme of “International Migration in Asia-Pacific: Development beyond borders”, more than 100 senior officials and civil society representatives from 23 Asia-Pacific countries, assembled for the Asia-Pacific Regional Preparatory Meeting for the General Assembly High-level Dialogue on International Migration and Development 2013, held in Bangkok from 29 to 31 May 2013. The Meeting was convened by the United Nations Regional Coordination Mechanism Thematic Working Group on International Migration, including Human Trafficking, in pursuance of General Assembly Resolution 67/219 that called for regional commissions, in cooperation with IOM and UN system to organize discussions “to examine regional aspects of international migration and development and to provide inputs to the preparatory process of the high-level dialogue”.
The outcome of the Meeting, “Asia-Pacific Input to the High-level Dialogue on International Migration and Development”, identifies priority migration and development issues for the region. More specifically, the Asia-Pacific Input considers actions for enhancing the development impact of international migration for migrants and societies, protecting the rights of migrants and strengthening data systems and research on international migration. The outcome recognizes the need to consider including the issue of international migration in the United Nations post-2015 development agenda. The Meeting requested the Executive Secretary of ESCAP to transmit the Asia-Pacific Input to the High-level Dialogue on International Migration and Development, to be held in New York on 3 and 4 October 2013, through the President of the General Assembly.