Towards a Holistic Approach to Labour Migration Governance and Labour Mobility in North Africa (THAMM)

This Project is a sub-regional project funded by the European Union through the “Emergency Trust Fund for Stability and Addressing the Root Causes of Irregular Migration and Displaced Persons in Africa” and the German Federal Ministry for Development (BMZ). It is implemented under two separate contracts, one concerning the ILO and IOM funded by the European Union and one concerning GIZ funded by the EU and BMZ.

Implementing partners: ILO, IOM and GIZ

Geographical area of implementation: Egypt, Morocco and Tunisia. Also, open to other North African countries (Algeria and Libya) for sub-regional activities only.

Project Background

The “Towards a Holistic Approach to Labour Migration Governance and Labour Mobility in North Africa-THAMM” project is implemented under two separate contracts, one concerning the ILO and IOM funded by the European Union through the “Emergency Trust Fund for Stability and Addressing the Root Causes of Irregular Migration and Displaced Persons in Africa” and one concerning GIZ funded by the European Union and BMZ.

The action is designed as a sub-regional programme aiming at the strengthening of migrant workers’ protection mechanisms throughout the migration cycle and whether workers are leaving the region or seeking employment there.

General Rationale

Adopting a holistic approach to labour migration governance and labour mobility in North Africa is essential to maximizing the benefits of labour migration and mobility for countries of origin and destination as well as migrant workers and their families. The Action is designed as a regional programme to foster legal migration and mobility for North Africa countries.

The programme addresses both the South-South dimension of labour migration and mobility through regional dialogue and cooperation (ILO- IOM components) as well as mobility aspects from North African countries to Europe (GIZ component).

It will contribute to improving the governance of labour migration and the protection of migrant workers in North Africa by supporting the development and implementation of coherent and comprehensive policy frameworks guided by relevant human rights and labour standards and based on reliable data and evidence, which are essential for fair and effective labour migration governance and decent work.

In addition, it will contribute to preparing, putting in place or improving legal migration and mobility schemes in cooperation with targeted North African countries and EU Member States, in particular Germany (GIZ component).

Citizens of North African countries of working age, workers prone to seek job opportunities abroad, and migrants working in North Africa will be the final beneficiaries of the action. They will benefit from the improvement of labour policy and legislative frameworks, as well as from the mobility schemes set up with selected EU (GIZ component).

The action contributes to Objective (3) "Improved migration management in countries of origin, transit and destination" of the EU Trust Fund for Africa and in particular to the Priority Action II –Advancing mutually beneficial legal migration and mobility of the Operational framework of the North of Africa window.

The action is also aligned with the Valletta Action Plan Priority Domain 2 “Legal migration and mobility”, and with the last communication on the delivery of the European Agenda on Migration that sets legal migration channels with third countries via pilot initiatives as a strategy for achieving concrete results.

The action will contribute to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) of Agenda 2030, through: a) SDG 8 “Promote sustained, inclusive and sustainable economic growth, full and productive employment and decent work for all,” especially targets 8.6 and 8.8; and b) SDG 10 “Reduce inequality within and among countries”, especially target 10.7.

The project will also contribute to a number of Objectives of the Global Compact for Safe, Regular and Orderly Migration. Lastly, in order to ensure coherence with initiatives across the continent, it is aligned to the revised African Union Migration Policy Framework (AU MPF) for Africa Plan of Action (2018-2030), in particular to two of its key pillars: (1) Migration Governance and (2) Labour Migration and Education. Where possible and relevant, the project will consider joint and/ or complementary activities with the AU MPF Action Plan as well as with the Joint Labour Migration Programme (JLMP).

Specific Objectives

The action comprises five specific objectives, one managed by GIZ, and the others managed jointly by the ILO and IOM. GIZ implements specific objective 4 which consists in establishing a mobility scheme for apprentices and workers. The ILO and IOM implement jointly the remaining four specific objectives:
  1. Improved or strengthened policy, legislative, institutional and regulatory frameworks aimed at enhancing the protection of migrant workers;
  2. Development and consolidation of mechanisms for the assessment, certification, validation and recognition of migrants' skills and qualifications;
  3. Improved labour migration related knowledge and data management;
  4. Effective cooperation between relevant stakeholders in the field of legal migration and mobility at sub-regional level.

Expected Results

Expected results from the 4 components implemented by ILO/ IOM specific objectives (1, 2, 3)

  • Strengthened national legislation, policies and strategic frameworks to ensure mainstreaming of labour migration and alignment with International Labour Standards (ILS);
  • Strengthened public employment services in their capacity to regulate and encourage professionalization of private employment agencies to work towards a fair recruitment approach;
  • Facilitated and effective recognition of qualifications and competences for migrant workers;
  • Labour migration data aligned with 20th International Conference of Labour Statisticians guidelines (2018) and development of functional Labour Migration Information Systems integrated to broader national Labour Market Information Systems (LMIS).

Expected results from the component implemented by GIZ (specific objective 4) and BMZ

  • Establish mobility schemes;
  • Strengthen capacities of Ministries of Labour and employment agencies;
  • Support capacity development in the area of recognition of qualifications in particular in relation to the German labour market;
  • Support partners in developing instruments to monitor labour migration‘s effects on the local labour market Support partners in developing instruments to protect the rights of migrants.

Expected results from the fifth component implemented by GIZ/ ILO/ IOM (specific objective 5)

  • Strengthened dialogue and cooperation in the field of labour migration between the partner countries (and opening to other North African countries);
  • Strengthened and effective inter-ministerial coordination at national level.

Important events in 2022:

  • 2nd THAMM Regional Steering Committee meeting enlarged to national partners (March 2022)
  • Kick-off of the development of National Strategy for International Labour Mobility (Morocco, July 2022)
  • Validation of the diagnostic studies on recruitment in Egypt and on labour migration statistics (Egypt, July 2022)
  • Presentation of the first conclusions of studies on prudential checklist and economic models for private employment agencies (Tunisia, June 2022)
  • 2nd THAMM Regional Conference on mobility schemes (November 2022)

Main achievements 2019-2021



  • A diagnostic study analyzing the regulatory framework and actual practices shaping the recruitment of Egyptian workers for the international market was completed in October 2021
  • Start of diagnosis study on labour migration data collection mechanisms undertaken by ILO in collaboration with CAPMAS


  • Three studies and one survey were completed in this reporting period: a survey on the impact of COVID-19 on Moroccans residing abroad (MRE) (employment and social protection), a study on available statistics of MRE and their vulnerability to COVID-19 crisis, a study on MRE pension schemes
  • Launch of the development of the integrated national information system on international labor migration under the leadership of the Office of the High Commission for Planning (Haut Commissariat au Plan, HCP).


  • Development of a brief on the National strategy for international employment and protection of migrant workers’ rights - “SNEI” pending Ministry of Employment’s final confirmation
  • Completion of study on the impact of COVID on labour migrants
  • The development and dissemination of several tools and resources on 2021, included: two guides designed to help employers to more effectively respond to the impact of COVID-19 as well as enhance migrant workers protection; a 2D animated video in French, English and Arabic to raise awareness among Tunisian workers about to be recruited for placement abroad through the ATCT.
  • 28 labour inspectors were trained to the control of private international placement agencies under the draft legislation,
  • Preparation of training material for international employment advisers from ANETI for the Promotion of Fair Recruitment principles and post-placement follow-up, completed and presented to ANETI.