Opportunities and challenges on Labour Migration: An Experience-Sharing Forum among East African Countries to be held in Zanzibar, Tanzania

Press release | 20 January 2023

International Labour Organization (ILO) through the Better Regional Migration Management (BRMM) programme is organising its first high level labour migration advisory group (LMAG) knowledge sharing forum in Zanzibar, Tanzania. State Ministers, PS’s, Director General’s from the Ministry of Labour and National Statistics Offices as well as Employers and Workers organisation and Private employment agencies leadership from seven countries in East Africa will come together from 24 to 25 January 2023, to share their experience and learn from each other on how to improve labour migration governance in the region. The Forum will also be an opportunity to take stock of the progress made under BRMM I and zoom on the needs of ILO’s constituents and agree on the building blocks of BRMM II, including its management structure.

Migration in the East and Horn of Africa is a multifaceted and complex phenomenon. It has always been part of its socioeconomic landscape. The flow of people into, between, and out of the countries in the region is best described as mixed migration flows, which include refugees, asylum seekers, and migrant workers. Lack of economic prospects, environmental change, protracted conflicts, and political and communal violence are the primary drivers of migration, resulting in the displacement of millions. The region is also a major destination for migrants from Africa and other regions. As a result, this flow has put a strain on the region's governments, who are struggling to manage the large number of migrants crossing their borders and moving through their countries. The men, women, and children that make up these migrant flows often use unsafe modes of transportation and smuggling networks during their journey, exposing themselves to injury, assault, detention, exploitation, and abuse.

To overcome some of these challenges and improve labour migration governance in the East and Horn of Africa, the International Labour Organization (ILO) is implementing the Better Regional Migration Management Programme funded by the United Kingdom Foreign Commonwealth and Development Office from September 2021 to March 2025. The BRMM programme aims at strengthening the capacities of countries in East and Horn of Africa (Djibouti, Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia, South Sudan, Uganda, and Tanzania) to govern labour migration by using evidence-based policies, enhancing migrant workers’ qualifications and skills, and actively engaging the social partners.

This Labour Migration Advisory Group (LMAG) will guide the work of the BRMM and other ILO labour migration projects and programmes in the region. The LMAG will also serve as a knowledge-sharing, cooperation, as well as capacity-building platform for countries to share expertise and experiences on labour migration governance in order to add value to regional labour migration efforts.
“The International community must do better to ensure the world’s 169 million migrant workers are able to realize their basic human and labour rights,” says ILO Director-General, Gilbert F. Houngbo, on International Migrants Day, 2022.

Where: Hotel Verde Zanzibar – Azam Luxury Resort and Spa
When: 24-25 January 2023

For more detailed information, please contact or visit:
1. Aida Awel
Chief Technical Advisor,
Better Regional Migration Management Programme, ILO CO - Addis Ababa

2. Yonas Zewdié
Communications Officer,
Better Regional Migration Management Programme, ILO CO – Addis Ababa

Or visit
 https://www.ilo.org/addisababa/countries-covered/ethiopia/lang--en/index.htm

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