4th  Thematic Session on the Global Compact for Migration:

Contributions of migrants and diaspora to all dimensions of sustainable development,
including remittances and portability of earned benefits

The United Arab Emirates is the chosen destination of nearly one million temporary migrant workers every year. These individuals come to the UAE seeking employment opportunities in our robust, diverse and open economy. Throughout our discussions on the Global Compact for Migration, the UAE has emphasized the holistic approach that we have adopted in relation to migration governance, looking across the entire migration cycle, from pre-departure and residency, to return, and reintegration.

As part of this holistic approach, our policies are guided by the belief that skills development, and the certification and recognition of skills will positively impact the welfare of workers, their income-earning potential, and overall labour productivity. Our experience shows the benefits of such policies in maximizing the contribution of migrants to sustainable development both in the countries of origin and destination. I would like to use this opportunity to highlight a specific programme that we are engaged in:

As part of a broader partnership between the government of the UAE and the governments of India, Pakistan, the Philippines and Sri Lanka; we have initiated a program dedicated to the development and recognition of workers’ skills. The program includes multi-stakeholder participation along 4 pillars:

(1) Worker certification by relevant qualifications authorities ;

(2) Capacity Enhancement programmes for periodic upgrading of skills;

(3) Documentation of capacity enhancement throughout the employment period;

(4) Mutual recognition of capacity enhancement between the UAE and workers’ countries of origin. 

These 4 elements can contribute to developing an enabling framework for maximizing social remittances and the contributions of migrants to sustainable development, and can easily be replicated in various migration corridors. We look forward to sharing our approach to the promotion of workers’ welfare with further examples in the coming sessions. 

Let me end here with our expectations of the Global Compact for Migration. In order to facilitate an enabling environment for the contribution of migrants to sustainable development, it is necessary to:

  • Acknowledge ongoing initiatives in the framework of Regional Consultative Mechanisms and other regional and sub-regional platforms aimed at cooperation in the field of skills development and recognition between countries of origin and destination;
  • And identify best-practices that may be applicable or tailored to the specific needs of various regions .

Thank you.