International dialogue on migration: Switzerland plays an active role

Filled conference hall with representatives from all over the world.
The Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) helps develop regional and global approaches to forced displacement and migration in multilateral dialogue platforms. © SDC

The challenges linked to forced displacement and migration require a coordinated response from the international community that goes beyond individual country measures. That is why Switzerland is committed to global and regional platforms that enable countries and other stakeholders to engage in dialogue and develop common solutions. Switzerland uses these international platforms to play an active role in developing global standards to improve how migration flows are managed and to reduce human suffering.

The SDC's focus

The SDC advocates for recognition by the international community of the correlation between migration and development. This is based on practical experience from its operational activities, which the SDC seeks to incorporate in global and regional approaches. It aims to improve how migration flows are managed, to reduce the suffering of refugees and migrants, and to make use of the productive contribution migrants can make to the economies and societies of both their country of origin and country of destination.

Migration is closely connected to sustainable economic and social development. Forced displacement and migration often result from a lack of prospects in the person's country of origin. That is why Switzerland's development approach focuses both on the causes of migration in order to provide alternatives to migration as well as on the needs of refugees and migrants, in order to create prospects for people in their country of origin and to strengthen their resilience. Migrants contribute not only to the development of their country of origin but also their country of destination, through regular labour migration and remittances sent back home, for example. In 2017, a total of USD 466 billion was transferred to emerging and developing countries – more than three times the amount of official development aid.

Spreading successful approaches to managing migration

In line with its development policy mandate on migration, the SDC works with governments, local authorities, international organisations, and representatives of civil society, the private sector and the scientific community in its partner countries. Together they develop joint approaches that address the link between migration and development. Here the focus is on creating governmental and social framework conditions to help the international community better manage migration flows and reduce the suffering of refugees and migrants. Such framework conditions also facilitate the contributions of regular migrants to economic and social development. Part of this work involves setting up measures against the exploitation of migrant workers, such as fair and ethical recruitment procedures, compliance with employment rights obligations, and encouraging the diaspora to play an active role in the development of their countries of origin.

Against migrant worker exploitation

By supporting the IOM's project to create a voluntary system of certification for recruitment agencies (IRIS – Integrated Recruitment Integrity System), the SDC encourages the private sector to be included in and take on responsibility for international measures against migrant worker exploitation.

IRIS – Integrated Recruitment Integrity System

The SDC brings these jointly developed, proven approaches into the international dialogue on migration, and incorporates the recommendations from this dialogue in its actual projects. In so doing, the SDC helps to spread effective approaches to migration.

Shaping international platforms for cooperation in migration

Switzerland's solution-oriented and constructive role has enabled it to play a key role in recent years in stimulating and advancing platforms dedicated to the international dialogue on migration. As part of Switzerland’s overall global engagement, the SDC has used its practical experience to play a significant role in developing global approaches.

Including stakeholders in the international dialogue on migration

Migration is a complex phenomenon which requires a variety of actors to work together in order to meet the diverse challenges involved. That is why Switzerland has taken a whole-of-government approach in its migration policy (interdepartmental structure for international cooperation on migration, ICM structure, see Akkordeon).

This makes Switzerland a global role model. In the international dialogue on migration, Switzerland also advocates for the inclusion of such stakeholders – which is not a given in many countries or in inter-state platforms at the global and regional level. That is why the SDC prioritises the inclusion of non-state actors in the dialogue on migration and in international cooperation. Based on Switzerland's principle of subsidiarity, the SDC also advocates the recognition of mayors and other local authorities as additional main stakeholders in terms of cooperation in migration.

Some of the SDC's key implementing partners for its operational projects are the International Organization for Migration (IOM) and the International Labour Organisation (ILO). In the area of research, the SDC works with the Overseas Development Institute (ODI) and supports the World Bank's Global Knowledge Partnership on Migration and Development (KNOMAD) project, which both carry out research on the interrelation between migration and development.

Background

Global and regional dialogue platforms promote exchange and cooperation on forced displacement and migration between states, and between states and other stakeholders such as international organisations, civil society, the private sector and local authorities. In so doing, the platforms make it possible to devise regional and global approaches based on the diverse experiences of these actors. It is in Switzerland's interests to play an active role in this dialogue so as to assert its concerns in terms of migration policy and bring its experience into the process. Thanks to its comprehensive approach to cooperation on migration with other countries (migration partnerships) Switzerland has a particularly high level of legitimacy and credibility for its engagement in the international dialogue on migration.

Migration partnerships

Links

Current projects

Object 25 – 36 of 42

Migrant Rights and Decent Work (MiriDew)

01.09.2018 - 31.08.2021

Remittances sent home by over 3 million Nepali migrant workers have significantly reduced poverty. Nevertheless, the rights of migrants are regularly violated. The proposed project will enhance the Government of Nepal’s understanding of overseas labour market conditions and strengthen mechanisms to better protect the rights of Nepali workers at home and abroad through better consular support and a strong presence in the international policy dialogue.


Strengthened and Informative Migration Systems (SIMS)

16.08.2018 - 14.12.2023

Labour migration remains a key driver for development in Bangladesh. The present project strengthens the socio-economic development of the country by providing better life perspectives for migrant workers. It enables migrant workers and their families to take informed decisions towards a productive and safe migration experience with reduced social costs. This supports implementation of the parliamentary mandate to better link Swiss migration policy with international cooperation.


Strengthening the capacities of Community-Based Organisations (CBOs) serving migrants in Egypt

15.04.2018 - 30.11.2021

In Egypt, Community Based Organisations (CBOs) are key actors in responding to migrant’s[1] basic needs. These include child and adult education, emergency assistance, medical and legal services. The project strengthens the ability of these organisations to provide these much-needed services. Moreover, CBOs will be empowered to advocate for migrant’s needs in the donor community and with decision makers. Reliable and sustainable services for migrants in Egypt also serve the migration interests of Switzerland.

 

[1]  The term migrant in this proposal includes refugees, asylum seekers, new arrivals in the “pre-refugee status determination phase”, (all nationalities identified by UNHCR) and vulnerable migrants (irregular and regular) residing in Egypt.

 


Strengthening cities for migration and development

15.10.2017 - 31.12.2021

Cities are the main destination for migrants worldwide. They play a crucial role in ensuring migrants’ social and economic inclusion and in leveraging migration as a source of innovation and prosperity. Switzerland aims at strengthening the evidence base on how to manage urban migration to maximize its development effects and at leveraging the voice and experience of cities in shaping effective migration policies. The project will involve Swiss cities and benefit from Swiss research expertise.


Programme Global Migration et Développement en Afrique de l‘Ouest (PGMD AO)

01.10.2017 - 31.12.2020

Le Programme Global Migration et Développement pour l’Afrique de l‘Ouest (PGMD-AO) vise à maximiser le potentiel de la migration pour le développement durable de la région. Dans cette 2ème Phase, il est prévu de contribuer au renforcement de la mobilité dans le cadre des processus d’intégration régionaux et de renforcer les dispositifs et mécanismes de protection des personnes en mobilité transfrontalière, en particulier les enfants.


SDC - ECDPM Partnership 2017-2020: Promoting PCSD concept work and implementation

01.10.2017 - 31.12.2020

The 2030 Agenda calls for joint actions across national borders, economic sectors and cultures for managing global risks and achieving a transition towards global sustainable development. As stipulated in the Agenda 2030 and resumed in the dispatch on Switzerland’s International Cooperation 2017-20, policy coherence for (sustainable) development will play a key role as a means of implementation. The SDC –ECDPM Partnership aims at providing analysis, policy solutions, and practical support to implement them, to SDC and development partners in general.



Intervention en santé mentale et soutien psychosocial pour les migrants au Niger

15.08.2017 - 28.02.2019

2016 environ 200,000 migrants sont passés par le Niger sur l’axe Niger-Lybie/Algérie. Ces migrants sont souvent exposés à des violations graves des droits de l’homme et des traumas. Seule une petite proportion des migrants bénéficie d’une forme d’assistance couvrant les besoins essentiels (santé, abri, nourriture). Une réponse aux traumatismes subis est quasi inexistante. Par ce co-financement, la Suisse contribue donc au renforcement d’une réponse santé mentale/psychosociale ainsi que d’autres services de protection pour les migrants au Niger pour préserver leur bien-être et le potentiel de développement humain.



Contribution to the KFPE - Science-Policy-Practice Dialogue

01.07.2017 - 31.12.2020

The Commission for Research Partnerships with Developing Countries (KFPE) is the central Swiss information, exchange and learning platform for research collaboration in and with the global South. During this transition phase, SDC’s support to KFPE will facilitate co-creation of synthetic evidence and debates on selected contemporary global challenges and enable KFPE to (re)position its 11 principles in the context of the 2030 Agenda for sustainable development.



SSD IOM: Regional Information and Coordination Mechanisms for South Sudanese Displacement Dynamics

01.02.2017 - 30.08.2018

Continued conflict, food insecurity and a dire economic situation have increased the scale of displacement both within and outside the country to unprecedented levels, with many sheltering in UN POCS or crossing to neighbouring countries. For humanitarians to be able to respond to the needs of these populations, a better understanding of the displacement dynamics and trends must be developed. IOM’s proposed project will help create a better understanding of the displacement dynamics and trends and enable humanitarians to effectively respond to needs of the populations.

Object 25 – 36 of 42