Colombo/Dhaka/New Delhi — On this International Migrants Day , the world lauds the socio-cultural and economic contributions of the 169 million migrant workers around the world who help boost economies and strengthen the social fabric of communities. Human mobility has been an enduring feature of our global history and is as pertinent today as it ever was given its inextricable link with sustainable development. Migration has the potential to deliver a triple development win for countries of origin, destination and for migrant workers and their families. Yet, the migration process implies complex challenges in terms of governance, migrant workers’ protection, and international cooperation.
RELEVANT SUSTAINABLE GOALS
The COVID-19 pandemic disrupted typical labour migration and mobility patterns; severely impeding movement due to travel restrictions. In consequence, access to opportunity was limited and existing challenges in recruitment, pay and conditions, access to justice and sustainable reintegration on return to countries of origin were further exacerbated. Although the direct impacts of the pandemic have receded, there remains an urgent need for inclusive, sustainable and systemic actions across levels to support decent work for all migrant workers.
Through our joint work in implementing the ‘Governance of Labour Migration in South and South-East Asia’ (GOALS) Programme ,we reiterate our commitment to protect the dignity of all migrant workers and to promote decent work and sustainable reintegration for the benefit of all.
Our interventions are grounded in the principles of international labour standards and human rights, and a commitment to a cooperative approach to optimize the overall benefits of labour migration and address the risks and challenges for migrant workers and their families in countries of origin, transit, and destination. We further support policy dialogues amongst the Colombo Process Member States to share good practices and strengthen collaboration to facilitate effective labour migration governance.
We are committed to working together with government and non-government partners to help migrant workers by:
- Promoting fair and ethical recruitment practices
- Recognizing and harmonizing qualifications and skills
- Developing and piloting guidelines for sustainable reintegration of returnee migrant workers
Recognizing the different realities that women, men, gender diverse people and other marginalized groups experience in the labour migration journey, we also reaffirm our commitment to working towards increased data and understanding on the rights and contributions of migrant workers, especially women, leading to more equitable policies and practices.
Together with Colombo Process Member States, employers and workers’ organizations, civil society and academia, ILO, IOM and UN Women stand committed to support sustainable and inclusive labour migration governance frameworks in the region.