Dialogue on Labor Migration in the Greater Mekong Subregion


8 September 2020


The Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the International Organization for Migration (IOM) held a joint virtual dialogue on Labor Migration in the Greater Mekong Subregion (GMS) on 8 September 2020, with the aim of strengthening cooperation through enhanced labor migration management. View the meeting recording here.


The dialogue

  • Discussed the multidimensional links between migration and development, highlighting how to respond to the socioeconomic impacts of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic;
  • Highlighted the need to ensure that intraregional labor mobility is gender responsive and fuels economic recovery in communities of origin and countries of work, while also integrating health and social protections; and
  • Emphasized how key initiatives, such as IOM's Poverty Reduction through Safe Migration, Skills Development and Enhanced Job Placement (PROMISE) project, can be adapted to respond to medium and long-term impacts of the crisis, while supporting the community and human resource development priorities of the GMS Program Long-term Strategic Framework 2030.

The virtual discussions examined labor migration trends with projections for pandemic-related impacts; took stock of the implications of migration costs and debt, as well as remittance reductions and their impact on socioeconomic recovery; explored ethical recruitment pathways through recruitment industry reform, regulation and government-to-government agreements; and explored integrated approaches for sustainable reintegration in response to economic contraction.

This dialogue was envisaged to guide future discussions on opportunities for action and coordination, and lay the foundation for potential cooperation in the future through a multi-stakeholder approach among the GMS, international organizations, civil society, employers, and related partners.


Last Updated: 17 September 2020