AT Monitoring Desk
KABUL: The Director General of the International Organization for Migration (IOM), António Vitorino, has congratulated Nepal on its successful leadership of the Colombo Process over the last two years and committed continued IOM support as Afghanistan takes over as Chair.
DG Vitorino made the remarks at the virtual Chairmanship handover ceremony during which Nepal was commended for its achievements, notably the work of the five Colombo Process Thematic Areas Working Groups towards greater understanding of labour migration governance across and beyond the region, and the contribution of the Colombo Process Member States to the Global Compact for the Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration (GCM).
Afghanistan succeeds Nepal as Chair of the Colombo Process for a period of two years. At the virtual handover ceremony, the Governments of Nepal and Afghanistan were represented by the Minister of Labour, Employment and Social Security of Nepal, Mr Gaurishankar Chaudhari, and the Minister of Labor and Social Affairs of Afghanistan, Mr Bashir Ahmad Tahyanj, respectively.
The Colombo Process – also known as the Regional Consultative Process on the Management of Overseas Employment and Contractual Labour for Countries of Origin in Asia – was established in 2003. It brings together 12 South and Southeast Asian labour-sending countries in a member state-driven, non-binding regional consultative process on migration to facilitate dialogue and cooperation on issues of common interest and concerns relating to labour mobility.
Nepal assumed the Colombo Process Chair in 2017 under the theme: “Safe, regular and managed migration: a win-win for all”. Minister Gaurishankar Chaudhari of Nepal stressed how, through their collective efforts, the Colombo Process had made significant contributions to the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration (GCM), which reflected the shared objectives of the Colombo Process itself. As the Chair, Nepal had promoted the Colombo Process position and ensured its high visibility also in the preparatory processes leading up to the GCM.
As the Chair for the next two years, Afghanistan will pursue an ambitious program of priorities to guide its mandate and advance its achievements. Mr Bashir Ahmad Tahyanj, Afghanistan’s Minister of Labor and Social Affairs, extended his gratitude to Nepal and stressed that it is a great honor for Afghanistan to continue Nepal’s legacy.
The Afghan Chairmanship will focus on how to ensure that labour mobility governance responds to the socioeconomic recovery from COVID-19, protecting workers throughout the labour migration process and ensuring safe and regular pathways for migration.