IOM Head Cites PH Excellent Relationship With Diaspora

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(DFA OPD photo)

11 October 2018 – The International Organization for Migration (IOM) has cited the Philippines for the way it engages its diaspora, saying this is something other countries could learn from.

IOM Director General Antonio Vitorino told Foreign Affairs Undersecretary for Migrant Workers Affairs Sarah Lou Y. Arriola that the Philippines can be an example on how countries could engage their nationals overseas. The two met on the sides of the International Dialogue for Migration in Geneva.

“The Philippines is known for its excellent relationship with the diaspora,” Director General Vitorino said. “Building capacities is the target of the new United Nation’s migration network that will be formed after the Global Compact on Safe, Orderly, and Regular Migration (GCM) is adopted.”

“There will be invitations for working on projects that link the county of origin and the diaspora, and the Philippines is a model for that,” Director General Victorino added.

“I was working in Hong Kong and I saw the evolution of your policy, one of the very good examples of migration policy,” the IOM Director General said.

For her part, Undersecretary Arriola said the Philippines harnessed the power of social media in engaging its migrants, noting that social media “is the tool of migrants” to reach out with their loved ones and be informed of developments back home.

“The Philippine diaspora is a migrant community that has found its political voice in national politics. Apart from using social media to reach out to their loved ones, they are harnessing platforms such as Facebook to be informed of the situation in the Philippines, as well as advocate for their concerns and issues,” she said.

The Undersecretary expressed the country’s support on this initiative and offered to assist the IOM on these projects.

Undersecretary Arriola also provided Director General Vitorino a copy of the outcome documents from the Manila Conference on “The Future of Migration: Global Migration Governance, Human Rights, and Sustainable Development in the Context of the Global Compact for Migration”, which was held in Manila in August. END