RoundTable 2 - Regional mobility to promote transferable learning and policy coherence
RT 2.1 South-South mobility: trends, patterns and transferable learning
The expected outcome of this roundtable is to establish what lessons can be learnt by comparing and contrasting the scale and nature of intra-regional mobility between regions. The roundtable will identify good practices in one region that could be replicable in others and the mechanisms that might enable that replication. While South-South mobility is a major trend (e.g. mobility amongst and in between countries in South Asia, Middle East and North Africa, Latin America and Caribbean), a particular focus will be placed on intra-African migration and its patterns and peculiarities, looking at what new developments the region might expect over the medium term and how best to respond to them. This roundtable will focus primarily on the phenomena of intra-regional migration and its trends and patterns.
Traditionally, the focus of migration policy and research has been on South/North mobility patterns. However, the majority of human mobility happens within a country and between countries of the same region. Intra-regional migration is significant in Europe and Central Asia, the Middle East and North Africa, and Sub-Saharan Africa and the Americas. For instance, Africa has developed intra-regional mobility agreements such as the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) and is one of the most active regions in the world in terms of multilateral cooperation on migration issues .
There is a growing body of evidence suggesting that migrants, particularly from Africa, present a reservoir of great potential that the African continent can harness in a variety of ways to accelerate the development prospects of many countries and assist in the fight against poverty, malnutrition, health concerns and unemployment. Many countries in Africa, for instance, receive a significant share of their foreign exchange from remittances, which is generally stable and predictable. Possibilities for the transfer of skills acquired over the years by its migrant populations could also create a significant externality to create traction and upskill the weaker economies of countries in Africa.
Most, if not all, countries in the world are countries of origin, transit and destination, albeit to varying degrees. The key challenge they must meet is how to use this human mobility for development at national and regional levels. As part of that objective, they must learn, how to build on ongoing regional economic integration processes, to devise mobility patterns that will contribute to them.
- How do the defining characteristics of intra-regional mobility compare and contrast between regions globally?
- Is south-south migration evolving, and if so, how might it develop further in the future?
- What are the particular features of South-South mobility?
- What are the barriers to more regional mobility and how can they be overcome?
- What best practice in certain regions can be transferred to and applied in other regions?
- What transmission mechanisms might be used to affect such a transfer?
- How could migration be integrated into socioeconomic cooperation between countries of the same region and include the private sector?
- What strategic public/private partnerships at the regional level could be identified to promote concrete solutions for safe, orderly and regular migration?