African Union - European Union Summit 2017

ILO Africa Director tells European Parliament that job-rich growth must be at the heart of EU-Africa partnership

Regional Director Cynthia Samuel-Olonjuwon was speaking at a high-level conference organized by the European Parliament in Brussels on Wednesday 22nd November.

News | 01 December 2017
© European Union 2017 - Source : EP / Benoit Bourgeois
ILO Regional Director for Africa Cynthia Samuel-Olonjuwon has urged European politicians to put quality job-creation at the centre of any future action plan between the two continents.

Addressing a high-level conference at the European Parliament, Ms Samuel-Olonjuwon explained that major population growth, a dearth of employment opportunities and growing inequalities between and within countries would contribute to driving migration in the future.

Solutions to these challenges would include promoting decent job creation in home countries, fair and well-regulated migration policies and the role of migration as a driver of development.

The large-scale event, organized by European Parliament President Antonio Tajani was in preparation for the 5th African Union – European Union Summit, held in Abidjan, Cote d’Ivoire on 29th-30th November. Several top-level speakers were present, including the African Union Chairman Moussa Faki Mahamat and EU High-Representative for Foreign Affairs Federica Mogherini.

Ms Samuel-Olonjuwon participated in a round-table focussing on migration and youth .

© European Union 2017 - Source : EP / Benoit Bourgeois

Whilst acknowledging the usefulness of the AU-EU Summit for discussing the shared challenges of migration, the ILO Regional Director used her intervention to point out that viable roadmaps exist already.

“The Joint Labour Migration Programme, adopted by the African Union Commission, the ILO, the IOM and UNECA (United Nations Economic Commission for Africa), can be both transformational and comprehensive in strengthening governance and regulation of labour migration, as well as promoting decent work and extending social security access to migrants. It has the advantage that it is a programme owned by the continent,” she said