Need to focus on economic dimension of migration: India

New Delhi, Dec 10 (IANS) India on Saturday said that countries across the world that face the problems of migration should focus on the economic dimension of the phenomenon.

“Studies indicate that economic migrants contribute positively to new business formation, innovation and job creation which act as catalysts of growth for destination countries in particular, and for the global economy in general they contribute above their weight,” Minister of State for External Affairs M.J. Akbar said at the Ninth Global Forum for Migration and Development in Dhaka.

“There is too much of focus on the problems associated with migration but too few solutions have been offered or agreed upon,” he said, calling for a a more comprehensive and long term vision for addressing the economic dimension of migration to be developed.

“This makes the Global Forum for Migration and Development an important platform for comprehensive and detailed deliberations towards developing the Global Compact on Migration,” he said.

He connected this phenomenon with the Sustainable Developments Goals of the UN, saying tht these two needed to be synergised.

Akbar said that India was for a nine-point protocol, which stressed on keeping the migrant at the core of the agenda and develop programmes, tools and methodology to enhance their interests, and of their families; focus on the economic dimension of migration and work towards eliminating barriers to economic migration; and create an environment for safe, orderly, regular, open and legal migration.

Others points include recognising skills and human mobility partnerships; being gender sensitive to provide equal opportunities to women and adopting non-discriminatory policies and practices; and special provisions to take care of people in vulnerable situations and inclusion of persons with disabilities

It was also important to protect the migrants’ human rights; identify vulnerabilities and stop exploitation and abuse; reduce incidents and impact of irregular migration, including trafficking and smuggling, as well as facilitating return and reintegration; and provisions to respond to natural, man-made disasters and crises due to conflicts, as these have potential to disrupt the migration phenomenon and disproportionately affect the interest of migrants.

Noting research indicates that a large section of migrants work in the informal sector, Akbar said this was a grey area with its own sets of challenges and remains largely unregulated and a comprehensive, and objective understanding of these challenges is essential for the success of global governance as well as the Agenda 2030 on Sustainable Development.