Official launch of the ACP Migration Facility

The ACP Migration Facility aims to support the African, Caribbean and Pacific countries to better understand and manage the flow of migration within their borders, was officially launched on the 27th and 28th October in Brussels during a workshop organised by the ACP Secretariat in collaboration with the European Commission’s EuropeAid Cooperation Office (AIDCO).

The key regional organisations of Africa, the Caribbean and the Pacific, as well as representatives from many ACP governments, were present on the 27th and 28th October in the office of the ACP Secretariat in Brussels to participate in the ACP Migration Facility launch workshop. They were welcomed by the Acting Secretary-General, Mr. Moss Lenga, of the ACP Secretariat.

A programme of the ACP Group of States in the framework of the Cotonou Agreement, provided with a fund of €25 million financed by the European Development Fund (EDF), ACP Migration covers the period 2009-2013.

Its objective is to support the ACP countries in their understanding and management of migratory flows and their consequences within their borders. The direct beneficiaries are the regional and national institutions as well as civil society. The indirect beneficiaries are principally the migrants themselves and the different entities participating in the process of consultation on the theme of “migration and development”.

To transform the “migration problem” into an opportunity for development

In encouraging the ACP governments to integrate migration management into their national policies, ACP Migration aims to make a positive contribution to social, economic and cultural development in these countries and to improve the quality of life and the rights of the populations.

In order to achieve this, it intends to establish a permanent dialogue between the representatives of all interested parties, including civil society, in the form of the ACP Consultation Forums.

From now until its end in June 2013, the Facility hopes to achieve three interdependent objectives:

– To create a Network of Observatories and analysis on ACP migration questions (ACP Migration Observatory);
– To strengthen the institutional capacity of the six ACP regions and 12 pilot countries which take part in the programme;
– To strengthen the capacities of the ACP civil society in order that they may make valid contributions to the dialogue on migration questions.

In order to achieve this, the Facility has a Programme Management Unit (PMU) based in Brussels, which supports the ACP Secretariat in day-to-day management and, on the ground, the twelve Technical Assistants specialised in migration issues, who will work closely with the national and regional entities in their role as facilitators. They will also regularly collaborate with the ACP Observatory, the network of ACP and EU researchers which will be implemented through a grant contract.

Twelve pilot countries

Although it concerns the entire ACP Group, ACP Migration will first focus on 6 regional organisations and 12 pilot countries: Senegal, Nigeria, Cameroon, The Democratic Republic of Congo, Kenya, Tanzania, Angola, Lesotho, Haiti, Trinidad and Tobago, Papua New Guinea and Timor Leste.

At the workshop in Brussels, seven of these countries had the opportunity to present their national current state of affairs in terms of migration, as well as the measures already taken, including the structure of organisms responsible for migration issues and dialogue and partnerships already in place.

Five regional organisations – ECOWAS, UEMOA, COMESA, ECCAS and CARICOM – also presented their activities in the field of Migration and Development, the structures implemented and their ongoing dialogue and partnerships.

Recommendations and dialogues

By meeting in Brussels, the stakeholders had the opportunity to establish links, to meet the experts of the PMU responsible for the management of the Facility on the ground and to discover the key planned actions for the next three years. They were also able to put forward their recommendations to enable the ACP Migration Facility to be deployed with the greatest possible success and speed.

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