Revised Migration Compact Draft Reflects Changes on Implementation, Review
UN Photo/Eskinder Debebe
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The co-facilitators have released the ‘Draft Rev 1’ of the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration.

Key changes include elimination of language differentiating between migrants and refugees and elimination of a previous request to the Secretary-General to align the set-up of the UN system on migration with ongoing management and development system reforms.

The revised draft also includes changes related to implementation and follow up and review, including language on a Regional Migration Review Forum.

26 March 2018: The co-facilitators of the intergovernmental consultations and negotiations related to the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration have released the first revised draft of the global compact. The ‘Draft Rev 1’ text reflects deliberations from the first and second rounds of intergovernmental negotiations, including on differentiation between irregular and regular migration, differentiation between migrants and refugees, implementation and capacity building, and follow-up and review.

The compact is being prepared for adoption at an intergovernmental conference convening from 10-11 December 2018, in Morocco. Negotiations on the text are taking place in six rounds between February and July 2018, in New York, US, led by co-facilitators Jürg Lauber, Permanent Representative of Switzerland, and Juan José Gómez Camacho, Permanent Representative of Mexico. The co-facilitators will present the latest draft during the third round of negotiations, convening from 3-6 April.

The revised draft, which reflects the first and second rounds of negotiations, removes language on differences between migrants and refugees.

The draft of 26 March 2018 includes a six-paragraph preamble that states that the compact presents a “non-legally binding, cooperative framework” that builds on previous commitments of Member States, upholds States’ sovereignty, fosters international cooperation and acknowledges that no State can address migration alone. The revised draft separates language on the global compact resting on the purposes and principles of the UN Charter with other declarations, frameworks and conventions. The revised draft removes language on differences between migrants and refugees.

The draft maintains the section on ‘Our Vision and Guiding Principles,’ which presents a common understanding, shared responsibilities and unity of purpose regarding migration, and the list of ten guiding principles on which the compact rests. The draft then presents a section on ‘Our Cooperation Framework and Objectives’ that features 22 objectives, each of which includes a set of ‘Actionable Commitments.’

The draft concludes with sections on Implementation and Follow-up and Review. On implementation, the current draft does not include the previous request to the Secretary-General to “align and review the set-up of the UN system on migration” with ongoing management and development system reforms. The draft maintains requests to the Secretary-General to: build on the UN system’s technical expertise and experience to support implementation of the global compact; provide a leading, coordinating and servicing role to the International Organization for Migration (IOM) to support system-wide coherence and implementation of the global compact; and employ the technical expertise and ensure coordination of the UN system at country and regional levels to support Member States’ implementation efforts.

On follow-up and review, the text states that each edition of the International Migration Review Forum will result in a Progress Declaration, which “may be considered by the High-level Political Forum on Sustainable Development” (HLPF).

On capacity building, as noted in the co-facilitators’ letter to Member States, no changes have been made to the paragraph on the capacity building mechanism. The paragraph states that Member States “decide to establish a capacity-building mechanisms that allows Member States, the UN and other stakeholders, including the private sector and philanthropic foundation, to contribute technical, financial and human resources in order to strengthen capacities of national and subnational authorities on migration.” The co-facilitators explain that they are working on a proposal related to the capacity building mechanism, for discussion during the fourth round of negotiations.

On the role of regions, the revised draft eliminates previous language that stated that each region would convene a Regional Migration Review Forum, which would serve as the “primary regional platform” to discuss and share progress on the global compact. The 26 March text states that governments will select “relevant subregional, regional and cross-regional processes, platforms and organizations, including the UN Regional Economic Commissions or Regional Consultative Processes” to review implementation within the regions. The revised draft further asserts that such regional reviews will alternate with global discussions to inform each edition of the International Migration Review Forum.

During a trip to Europe, UN General Assembly (UNGA) President Miroslav Lajcak discussed the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration in meetings with the Presidents of the European Commission (EC) and the European Parliaments. [Draft Rev 1 of the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration] [UNGA President Spokesperson’s briefing] [SDG Knowledge Hub coverage of migration compact]


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