IOM Welcomes Recognition of Migration in Rio+20 Text
Brazil - IOM has welcomed the inclusion of migration in the final text adopted by the Rio+20 UN Conference on Sustainable Development.
IOM Director General William Lacy Swing, speaking in Rio, noted that migration is a mega-trend of the 21st century, with one in seven on the planet in a migratory state.
“Migrant remittances are double that of official development assistance and equal to foreign direct investment. Migration, therefore, is an effective instrument to promote sustainable development, if managed well,” he said.
“Environmental and climate change will be a game-changer for migratory patterns as we know them and climate-induced migration is already one of the major challenges that States increasingly need to address,” he added.
“Rio has been an opportunity for us to focus and ask ourselves if we are allocating the necessary resources to cope with this vast challenge. I am especially pleased that States recognized the important link between upholding the rights of migrants and decent work and social protection,” he said.
The Rio+20 document calls on signatory States “to promote and protect effectively the human rights and fundamental freedom of all migrants regardless of the migration status, especially those of women and children, and to address international migration through international, regional or bilateral cooperation and dialogue and for a comprehensive and balanced approach, recognizing the roles and responsibilities of countries of origin, transit and destination in promoting and protecting the human rights of all migrants, and avoiding approaches that might aggravate their vulnerability.”
It also commits signatories “to systematically consider population trends and projections in national, rural and urban development strategies and policies,” noting that “through forward-looking planning, we can seize the opportunities and address the challenges associated with demographic change, including migration.” And it recognizes the role of migrants as important stakeholders in sustainable development.