EU and UN Partner to Support Kiribati, Tuvalu and Nauru on Labour Migration Research

Suva, Fiji---Representatives from Kiribati, Nauru and Tuvalu are gaining the skills needed to tap into decent foreign employment opportunities at a workshop on Foreign Employment Research and Promotion which opened in Suva today. The three-day workshop is funded by the European Union through the Pacific Climate Change and Migration (PCCM) project.

International labour migration, particularly temporary migration has been identified as a key development priority in Kiribati, Nauru and Tuvalu where domestic employment opportunities are limited.

Creating decent work opportunities in foreign labour markets requires detailed knowledge of labour shortages, immigration system requirements, and recruitment channels, as well as the ability to use the information to undertake labour marketing and promotion. This training seeks to provide a basic foundation for government officials to develop the required skills.

Addressing the workshop, Head of the European Union Delegation for the Pacific, Ambassador Andrew Jacobs said: “The European Union understands that each of your countries - Tuvalu, Kiribati and Nauru - face challenges in creating decent work opportunities for your citizens – challenges that may become even more complex with the increasing adverse impacts of climate change.

"While creating opportunities domestically is of course, your prime priority, labour migration and decent work abroad is an important adaptation strategy for Pacific Islanders - alleviating strain on local resources and unemployment, diversifying a household’s income and providing new opportunities for training, skills and market access. These benefits can be particularly important for your communities especially vulnerable to climate change," Ambassador Jacobs said.

Also being launched at a side event in the margins of the workshop is a Guide on International Labour Migration Statistics for Policymakers and Statistics Organisations in the Pacific. The guide, to be launched by the PCCM project on 28 May, explains key concepts relevant to international labour migration statistics and makes concrete recommendations on how Pacific Island countries can move towards a harmonised system for collection and analysis of timely, accurate and relevant migration statistics.

“As with many aspects of policymaking, reliable and timely statistics are the bedrock of good policy. We need statistics in order to understand the link between the economy, social development and migration, to develop policies and to monitor and tweak them," Ambassador Jacobs said.

Sasaki Satoshi, Decent Work Specialist for the ILO Office for Pacific Island countries said the guide is a useful tool which will help better understand and better plan labour migration in the Pacific.

Media Contacts:
Malcolm Ponton, UNESCAP/PCCM Project: Email: [email protected]
Sophia Kagan, ILO: Email: [email protected]
Debbie Singh, European Union: Email: [email protected]

Background
The PCCM project is a three-year Multi-donor Action funded by the European Union and implemented by the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP), the International Labour Organisation (ILO) and the United Nations Development

Programme (UNDP). The key goals are to strengthen Pacific Island countries’ ability to address the impacts of climate change on migration and to strengthen national capacity to use migration as a way to adapt to climate change impacts. The project commenced mid- 2013 and will end mid- June 2016.