Malagasy Officials Visit Mauritius to Study Labor Migration

By International Office of Migration (IOM)

A delegation of Malagasy officials has completed a four-day study tour to Mauritius to study labor migration management. The visit, which was facilitated by the IOM, focused on sharing experiences on the institutional and administrative framework governing labor migration.

It also looked at successful practices of 'south-south' and 'south-north' labor migration and identified opportunities for strengthening cooperation between Madagascar and Mauritius.

The delegation included senior advisors from the President and Prime Minister's Offices, officials from the Ministries of Employment, Labor, Foreign Affairs, and Interior, representatives from the Malagasy Embassy in Mauritius, and IOM Madagascar and Mauritius officials.

Participants had the opportunity to meet and exchange with a range of Mauritian government officials, with Malagasy workers in Mauritius, and with representatives of the private sector.

Madagascar continues to face challenging socio-economic conditions. The UN estimates that nearly 336,000 jobs — 30 percent of the formal employment sector — have been lost in the past five years. This has led an increasing number of Malagasy nationals looking for opportunities abroad.

International labor migration increasingly is recognized as a short to medium term coping strategy that can bring potential developmental gains both for the migrants themselves and their communities of origin.

Against this background, and with the financial contribution from the IOM Development Fund (IDF), IOM is supporting the Ministry of Employment in the implementation of its labor migration strategy, in particular by enabling the practical implementation of the government's labor migration policies by strengthening the country's capacity on bilateral labor migration engagements.

The study tour is one of many activities under the 18-month initiative aimed at strengthening labor migration management in the country, which also features capacity building sessions for stakeholders on concepts and international frameworks for labor migration, the realization of a comprehensive labor migration assessment, and provision of support to stakeholders to develop guidelines for negotiating labor agreements in ways that ensure migrants' rights are protected.

"The sharing of experiences, discussions and exchanges, as well as concrete exposure to opportunities that can be leveraged and challenges that need to be addressed by policy-makers, is an essential part of this process towards strengthened migration management,” said Daniel Silva y Poveda, IOM Madagascar's Head of Office.