IOM, ILO, Organize ECOWAS Regional Workshop on Migration Data Management

Press Release

Togo - IOM through the European Union (EU)-funded project “Support to Free Movement of Persons and Migration in West Africa (FMM West Africa),” is organizing, in collaboration with the ILO, the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) Workshop on Migration Data Management in Lomé, Togo.

The four-day meeting, which started on Tuesday (15/03), is set in a context where migration-related data have become a central issue at global, regional, and national levels, including the ECOWAS space and Mauritania.

Indeed, no migration policy is conceivable without reliable data. To develop an effective immigration policy, a country needs to know the number of foreigners residing on its territory and their characteristics.

A country also needs to have a thorough picture of the migration trends: the flows and their evolution over time. Finally, depending on the specific policies considered, specific data are needed. For example, concerning labour immigration policies, countries need to have a clear understanding of their labour market and the existence of mismatches in it.

With the help of this information, policy makers can create conditions for migration which is beneficial for the migrants, the host country and that effectively achieves its established objectives. Similarly, effective emigration policies rely on sound data such as trends, migrants’ characteristics and sector specific information such as that linked to the labour market.

“This workshop presents an opportunity to increase awareness on the importance of migration-related data – as well the challenges they pose – among ECOWAS Commission and member states officials and to strengthen their capacities in this specific area of migration management,” said FMM West Africa Programme Coordinator ad interim Kristiina Lilleorg.

She added: “Importantly, the workshop is an occasion to agree on specific actions to be undertaken in the coming months and years to improve the collection, compilation, analysis and use of national data on migration.”

The workshop brings together representatives from ECOWAS member states institutes of statistics, the ECOWAS Commission, IOM’s Global Migration Data Analysis Centre, the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs (Population Division), ILO experts on statistics, Data-Pop Alliance, FMM West Africa project staff, IOM Togo and the European Union Delegation in Togo.

In addition to the adoption of a regional mechanism to compile migration data and the endorsement of guidelines on migration data management, the workshop will also serve as an occasion to discuss the details of cooperation between the FMM West Africa project and ECOWAS member states in the following areas: analysis of population census data, inclusion of migration components in small-scale surveys, technical assistance to the development of national migration policies and publication of new Migration Profiles.

The ECOWAS Regional Workshop on Migration Data Management is organized as part of the FMM West Africa project, an EU-ECOWAS-funded project implemented by the Consortium of Partners (IOM, ICMPD and ILO) under the leadership of the ECOWAS Commission. The project seeks to maximize the development potential of free movement of persons and migration in West Africa.

For further information, please contact Kristiina Lilleorg. Tel.: +234 814 0671127, Email: