Second International Forum on Migration Statistics Calls for More Evidence-Based Dialogue

“I have put migration data at the centre of my vision for IOM, and have committed to strengthening the Organization’s engagement in this area over the next years,” IOM Director General António Vitorino told the second International Forum on Migration Statistics (IFMS) during opening ceremonies here this past weekend.

Organized jointly by the International Organization for Migration, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UNDESA) brought over 700 delegates from more than 90 countries to its unique space for dialogue, information-sharing and networking for a broad range of actors hosted by the Egyptian Government, which currently chairs the African Union (AU).

Added DG Vitorino: “We as experts, practitioners and decision-makers have a collective responsibility to ensure that reliable facts and robust evidence are not only produced but also used appropriately and intelligently to steer policy and programmes and to combat an often-pervasive misinformation about migration.”

Delegates representing national and regional authorities, NGOs, international agencies and the private sector have gathered in Cairo with the aim of building and strengthening migration data capacities around the world. The three-day event at the InterContinental Citystars Hotel in Cairo concludes Tuesday (21/01).

Mr. Sameh Shoukry, Egyptian Foreign Minister, stated: “Owning and relying on data in policy making is a key guarantee of proper international cooperation in the management and governance of human migration, and to enhance the contribution of migrants to development on a basis that respects their rights, legal frameworks and meets the needs of the international labour market, in addition to supporting the efforts of the international community to address some of the root causes of migration such as conflict, economic and social crises and environmental change.”

The Forum is organized around six thematic areas including measuring progress on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and other global commitments as well as data innovation. Several sessions will explore the potential of using “big data” to compliment the analysis of human mobility and migration flows as well as ways to address internal displacement through innovative monitoring tools.

“This conference comes at an important and significant time,” noted Egyptian General Khairat Barakat, Head of the Central Authority for Public Mobilization and Statistics. “Migration data constitutes a key segment of human resources, manpower information and cross-border groups. It also establishes controls for coordination between migration data producers to enable them to make the most of the data.”

IOM’s Global Migration Data Analysis Centre (GMDAC) Director Frank Laczko, will speak at the closing plenary session on the next steps after the Forum. Other IOM representatives speaking at the Forum include Michele Klein Solomon, IOM Director of the Policy Hub and Marina Manke, IOM Head of Labour Mobility and Human Development Division.

The inaugural IFMS took place in January 2018 at the OECD Headquarters in Paris. IFMS aims to foster continuous discussion on global processes and enhance exchange between producers and users of migration data. The event is supported by partner organizations including ILO, UNHCR, UNODC, European Commission, UNFPA, and UNECE.


Published: 20 January 2020

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