How can a government address a broad variety of more than sixty challenges identified in the area of migration? Which migration governance and management issues need to be tackled first, and how are they linked to each other? What governance structures and legal frameworks are in place, and how can they be improved?
These are the main questions, which the final draft of the Comprehensive Migration Policy (CMP) for Afghanistan addresses. Following a MoU signed between Afghanistan’s Ministry of Refugees and Repatriation (MoRR) and ICMPD in July 2017, the CMP was developed with EU funding and technical assistance of ICMPD and officially presented on 24 June 2019 in Kabul, Afghanistan.
Dr. Abdullah Abdullah, Chief Executive of Afghanistan congratulates ICMPD
The presentation took place at Afghanistan’s Displacement and Return Executive Committee (DiREC) and was chaired by the Chief Executive of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, Dr Abdullah Abdullah. The presentation was given by MoRR Minister Sayed Hussain Alemi Balkhi and supported by the EU Delegation in Afghanistan and ICMPD representatives. The DiREC presentation was preceded by meetings and presentations to the national stakeholders facilitated by the Council of Ministers, and international stakeholders, facilitated by the EU Delegation in Kabul. Chief Executive Dr Abdullah Abdullah as well as representatives from the United Nations, including IOM and UNHRC, congratulated the Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan and ICMPD for the development of a very strong and sound policy document, fully reflecting the realities of Afghanistan.
The CMP development process
Afghanistan’s Comprehensive Migration Policy was designed to respond to the country’s complex migration situation in four identified policy areas: return and reintegration; regular migration; prevention of irregular migration, and migration and development. It will help Afghanistan move from short-term humanitarian responses to long-term migration and development governance. Based on the existing legal framework, the CMP defines more than ninety policy measures to further enhance its implementation and address pertinent migration related challenges. It introduces new policy dimensions, but also builds on existing policies and processes in country, taking them forward and linking them within a comprehensive migration management framework.
The two-year policy development process involved a series of stakeholder consultations with all relevant national and international stakeholders, including ministries working in the area of migration or returnees and reintegration, international and UN organisations as well as civil society actors. ICMPD and its team of experts led this process, supporting the Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan and its Ministry of Refugees and Repatriation by ensuring appropriate methodologies are applied and all relevant stakeholders are involved. ICMPD provided its support in the framework of the project “Improving Migration Management in the Silk Routes Countries”, funded by the European Union.
What are the next steps?
The CMP’s final draft shall be presented to Afghanistan’s Ministers Cabinet in order to be adopted as a national document in the near future. Following the adoption, an Action Plan for its implementation shall be developed; this implementation plan will outline short and long-term actions aligned with the defined policy responses, as well as responsibilities. The Action Plan will also include advocacy and resource mobilisation for fundraising towards implementation.