- Published on 09 March 2012
GFMD Steering Group and Friends of the Forum Praise Mauritian Chair for GFMD 2012 Proposed Work Plan.
13 February 2012 - Geneva, Switzerland. The current GFMD Chair-in-Office Mauritius convened the back-to-back meetings of the GFMD Steering Group and the Friends of the Forum on 6 and 7 February 2012 to solicit final comments and endorsement of the draft concept paper and proposed work program for 2012. 33 state members of the GFMD Steering Group and about 140 Friends of the Forum representing around 90 governments and 20 GFMD Observers strongly endorsed the draft paper and congratulated the Mauritian Chair for its ambitious work program, while offering further comments and inputs.
Flanked by the GFMD Troika that included Mexico, Switzerland and Sweden, as well as the Special Representative of the UN Secretary General (SRSG) for Migration and Development, Mr. Ali Mansoor, Mauritian GFMD Chair, presented the key elements of the draft GFMD 2012 concept paper. He underlined that the paper was a product of an all-inclusive and multi-pronged consultation process, which started with a themes survey in early December 2011. The paper had undergone two revisions after the Mauritian GFMD Taksforce received substantial comments and inputs from 40 governments and 15 non-governmental stakeholders, followed by the brainstorming sessions for governments and non-state actors in Ebene, Mauritius on 18 and 19 January 2012, respectively. Based on the discussions on 6 and 7 February and further comments to be submitted by mid-February 2012, the draft will be finalized and circulated as soon as possible to the Friends of the Forum.
Mr. Mansoor emphasized that the new GFMD 2012 overarching theme, “Enhancing the human development of migrants and their contribution to communities and states” was a collective choice made by governments and key partners. Under this umbrella theme, the Friends of the Forum agreed to develop three Roundtables – 1) Circulating Labour for Inclusive Development; 2) Factoring Migration into Development Planning; and 3) Managing migration and perceptions of migration for development outcomes. These RT themes ranked the highest among the 11 themes outlined in the December themes survey. The issues of gender and human rights will be treated as cross-cutting issues in all Roundtables, and a dedicated session on domestic workers will be featured under Roundtable 3.
In keeping with the format of the first four annual meetings of the GFMD, a team of governments with possible support from non-governmental experts will organize each of the Roundtables under the supervision of the Chair-in-Office. Roundtable Coordinators drawn from the Chair’s Taskforce will support the government team throughout the preparatory process -- from the conceptualization of the Roundtable background paper to the actual conduct of the Roundtable sessions.
In both meetings, the Mauritian GFMD Chair called on governments to co-chair or form part of the government RT teams that will commence work immediately, to ensure a successful government meeting in Mauritius on 21–22 November 2012.
The 2012 work program will also include the second phase of the GFMD assessment. Amb. Shree Servansing, Permanent Representative of Mauritius to the United Nations in Geneva, who is leading the GFMD assessment (Phase II) on behalf of the Chair-in-Office, reported that 2012 will be dedicated to a strategic and political discussion among all GFMD participating governments on possible options for the future of the GFMD, including its relationship with the United Nations.
Meanwhile, Mr. Peter Sutherland, UN SRSG for Migration and Development, interceded on behalf of the Mauritius Government to request financial assistance to realize the GFMD 2012 work program. Juxtaposing the comprehensive agenda of the Mauritian GFMD Chair and the size of its population and national income, he stressed that now more than ever, financial support from governments and other donor entities would be crucial. He believed that the GFMD was the most cost-efficient process compared to other international processes dealing with equally important issues.
Finally, Mr. John Bingham of the International Catholic Migration Commission, coordinator of the GFMD 2012 civil society process shared the vision of civil society for GFMD and initial plans on how to build upon achievements of last year. He also called on the Friends of the Forum for both substantive and financial support to ensure a meaningful engagement by the civil society.
For further information:
- Download the Agenda of Steering Group and Friends of the Forum meetings
- Draft Concept Paper Powerpoint Presentation
- GFMD 2012 Concept and Work Plan
- Work plan of the Assessment Team (Phase II)