Supporting Migration Policies in Mali: 10th UN Network on Migration Launched in West and Central Africa

Bamako – The United Nations Network on Migration was launched in Mali this week by the International Organization for Migration (IOM) and the United Nations Resident Coordinator in partnership with the Government of Mali, the latest of more than 50 national and regional coordination mechanisms/Networks established or re-invigorated at the national and regional levels globally to enhance coordination and cooperation by the UN system on migration.  

“We are committed to work alongside the Government of Mali to ensure migration can continue to promote Mali’s economic, social and cultural development,” said Mbaranga Gasarabwe, United Nations Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator in Mali.  

There are now 10 National Networks on Migration in West and Central Africa 

With four million nationals living abroad, 50,000 foreigners residing in the country and more than 171,000 internally displaced persons (according to the Ministries of Malians Abroad, INSAT, CMP), Mali is a major country of migration, transit and destination, particularly because of the many economic, social, securities, geographical and environmental challenges the country faces.  

“We welcome this UN initiative in Mali to strengthen the protection and security of migrants, to enhance the diasporas’ contribution to national development and contribute to a better strategic positioning of Mali on migration issues through the implementation of effective management policies,” said the Minister of Malians Abroad, Amadou Koita. 

Composed of all United Nations entities in Mali, the Network’s aim is to facilitate effective and coordinated support to the Government of Mali with the strengthening of migration policies, including the implementation, monitoring and review of the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration (GCM). Thus, the protection of the rights and welfare of migrants will be part of the mandate of all UN agencies. 

“IOM reaffirms its willingness to support the Government of Mali in all its efforts towards a humane and orderly management of migration that is beneficial to all,” said Pascal Reyntjens, IOM Chief of Mission in Mali. 

The overall aim of the Network is to promote migration policies that support the well-being of migrants and societies in a coherent, holistic and balanced manner, policies aligned with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), the African Union Migration Policy Framework and other sub-regional initiatives while advancing the GCM’s 23 objectives. 

In August 2019, IOM had already provided its expertise to the Government of Mali in developing the Global Compact National Plan of Action for Migration. 

For more information, please contact Florence Kim at IOM’s Regional Office for West and Central Africa Tel: +221786206213, Email: 

The United Nations established a Network on Migration to ensure effective, timely and coordinated system-wide support to Member States. In carrying out its mandate, the Network will prioritize the human rights and well-being of migrants and their communities of destination, origin, and transit. It will place emphasis on those issues where a common UN system approach would add value and from which results and impact can be readily gauged. 

Why it matters 

  • The development of national and regional networks is vital for the longer-term vitality of the GCM as a cooperative framework on migration. 
  • It is also essential for the UN system’s ability to support states and stakeholders in effective implementation, review and follow-up of the GCM in an effectively, timely and coordinated manner. 
  • It provides a platform for strengthened cooperation and collaboration on migration and related fields, in line with international law, the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, and UN reform initiatives. 

A significant number of UN country and regional offices have either established anew or strengthened pre-existing migration coordination mechanisms and there is growing enthusiasm at the country level to establish Networks or similar migration coordination mechanisms.