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.