RoundTable 2 - Regional mobility to promote transferable learning and policy coherence
RT 2.2 Regional mobility and policy coherence to support development
The expected outcome of this roundtable is to arrive at a shared understanding of why it is important to and how to enhance policy coherence when it comes to regional mobility in order to foster development. Participants will reflect upon the scope for further international collaboration at a regional level to augment policy coherence (both vertical and horizontal) on migration and development. They will ask whether the global architecture for the governance of migration takes sufficient account of inter-regional differences or gives all regional groupings adequate voice on a world stage. The round table will highlight regions in which policy coherence regarding migration and development is most advanced, and show ways in which such advancements can be replicated in other regions.
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.
- Could national policies (including in migration, labour, finance, health, etc.) be better aligned to recognize and address regional migration trends and patterns?
- What is the interrelation between regional free movement and regional economic and social integration?
- How might the global governance of migration better factor in regional differences in migratory dynamics and priorities in migration management?
- Do regions (as opposed to countries) co-ordinate themselves effectively in multi-lateral fora across multiple sectors?
- How can decentralized cooperation between territories at the local level, including in trans-border regions, support policy coherence in migration governance across migratory channels?
- In which regions are migration policies, economic policies and development policies most closely aligned?
- Can success in achieving policy coherence be replicated? And if so how?