Maria Angela Villalba, representing the Civil Society Organizations (CSO), Migrant Forum in Asia (MFA) presented her paper on the panel on "Migration and Economic Growth/Development" on April 28-29, 2014 in Dhaka, Bangladesh (see paper below). An inter-government meeting organized by the Governments of Switzerland and Bangladesh and the International Organization for Migration (IOM), GEM sought to draw-up its recommendations to the Open-ended Working Group (OWG) on Sustainable Development Goals (SGD) [as the Millenium Development Goals (MDG) comes to a close in 2015. Other panels/themes were: Migration and employment and Decent Work for All; Migration and and Education, Migration and Health; and Migration and Means of Implementation. The GEM pushes for the relevance of migrants and migration in the post-2015 development agenda.
"Discussion at the last (10th) OWG (April 2014) suggests that migration should have a logical place as a driver of economic growth in majority countries at different levels of economic development. In this context, remittances could play an important role in reducing various forms of inequality... migration has tremendous potential to improve development and welfare in origin and sending countries including migrant themselves and their families left behind... Several studies have shown that migration and remittances lead to increased investments in health, education and entrepreneurship. The achievement of MDGs 2,3,4,5 and 6 have also been facilitated by migration and remittances. Migration and remittances can be a valuable complement to broad-based development efforts...
"Yet, migration and remittances (collective or individual) should not be viewed as a substitute for official development aid as they are private money that should not be expected to fund public projects or as a substitute for development policies." (Background notes).
From the various panel inputs and plenary discussions, the final Recommendations was drawn up. It will be taken up in various international convenings including the Global Forum on Migration and Development (GFMD) in Stockholm.