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Global Compact for Migration

The New York Declaration

For the first time on 19 September 2016 Heads of State and Government came together to discuss, at the global level within the UN General Assembly, issues related to migration and refugees. This sent an important political message that migration and refugee matters have become major issues in the international agenda. In adopting the New York Declaration for Refugees and Migrants, the 193 UN Member States recognized the need for a comprehensive approach to human mobility and enhanced cooperation at the global level and committed to:

  • Protect the safety, dignity and human rights and fundamental freedoms of all migrants, regardless of their migratory status, and at all times;
  • Support countries rescuing, receiving and hosting large numbers of refugees and migrants;
  • Integrate migrants – addressing their needs and capacities as well as those of receiving communities – in humanitarian and development assistance frameworks and planning;
  • Combat xenophobia, racism and discrimination towards all migrants;
  • Develop, through a state-led process, non-binding principles and voluntary guidelines on the treatment of migrants in vulnerable situations; and
  • Strengthen global governance of migration, including by bringing IOM into the UN family and through the development of a global compact for safe, orderly and regular migration.

Annex II of the New York Declaration set in motion a process of intergovernmental consultations and negotiations culminating in the planned adoption of the global compact for migration at an intergovernmental conference on international migration in 2018.

What are the aims of the global compact for migration?

The global compact is framed consistent with target 10.7 of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development in which member States committed to cooperate internationally to facilitate safe, orderly and regular migration and its scope is defined in Annex II of the New York Declaration. It is intended to:

  • Address all aspects of international migration, including the humanitarian, developmental, human rights-related and other aspects;
  • Make an important contribution to global governance and enhance coordination on international migration;
  • Present a framework for comprehensive international cooperation on migrants and human mobility;
  • Set out a range of actionable commitments, means of implementation and a framework for follow-up and review among Member States regarding international migration in all its dimensions;
  • Be guided by the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the Addis Ababa Action Agenda; and
  • Be informed by the Declaration of the 2013 High-Level Dialogue on International Migration and Development.

The development of the global compact for migration - an open, transparent and inclusive process

The Modalities Resolution for the intergovernmental negotiations of the global compact for safe, orderly and regular migration outline the key elements and timeline of the process. The global compact will be developed through an open, transparent and inclusive process of consultations and negotiations and the effective participation of all relevant stakeholders, including civil society, the private sector, academic institutions, parliaments, diaspora communities, and migrant organizations in both the intergovernmental conference and its preparatory process.

IOM’s Role and Contribution

With more than 65 years of experience and expertise in managing migration IOM is well-equipped to support the preparatory and negotiation process of the global compact for migration in close cooperation with the Special Representative of the United Nations Secretary-General on International Migration (SRSG)’s office by extending technical and policy expertise as outlined in the Modalities Resolution.

At the global level:

  • IOM supported the organization of the six informal thematic consultations on facilitating safe, orderly and regular migration in Geneva, New York and Vienna. IOM provided  thematic papers on all 24 elements listed in ANNEX II of the New York declaration. IOM will also assist in developing inter-agency issue briefs drawing upon the expertise of the Global Migration Group (GMG) and other relevant entities.
  • The IOM International Dialogue on Migration (IDM) will be dedicated to supporting the global compact on migration process.

  • IOM has established the Migration Research Leaders’ Syndicate in recognition of the existing wealth of expertise on migration research and analysis globally. As the first component of the Syndicate’s work, members have been asked to provide their ‘top three reads’ to support the global compact for migration; we also expect to commission short papers to support thinking on how the global compact can enhance safe, orderly and regular migration.

  • IOM has established a civil society liaison to ensure the inclusiveness of the process through mutual information sharing and regular engagement and mobilization of civil society organizations.

  • IOM will support the Secretary General (SG) in drafting the report for input to the zero draft of the global compact.

At the regional level:

  • IOM continues to work with Regional Consultative Processes (RCPs) to support and encourage their contributions to the preparatory process of the global compact for migration. In order to gather inputs and contributions from all RCPs, IOM also organized a Global RCP Meeting in October 2016 in Geneva.
  • IOM provided support to the regional economic commissions and jointly organized regional consultations among Member States of the United Nations and other relevant stakeholders to examine regional and sub-regional aspects of international migration.

At the national level:

  • Using its global footprint to ensure a bottom-up approach to the consultations, IOM through its country offices reached out to host governments to support holding national multi-stakeholder consultations.