IOM Iraq convenes senior Government of Iraq officials to develop strategic recommendations on how to reach out to Iraqis abroad

With a view of understanding and strengthening potential for the diverse range of Iraqi expertise and skills abroad to support the country’s development, IOM Iraq’s EU funded HIJRA AMINA Programme conducted a workshop on “Government Engagement with Iraqis Abroad” from 6-9 July 2015 in Erbil. The workshop brought together a Member of Parliament of the Parliamentary Committee of Deportees, Displaced and Expatriates, a representative of the Foreign Relations Committee and 17 senior officials from the Ministry of Planning, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ministry of Migration and Displacement, Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs and Ministry of Higher Education. 

During the four-day workshop, HIJRA AMINA provided a platform for high level officials to foster governmental synergies towards developing a targeted strategy to promote engagement of the Iraqi diaspora in the socio-economic development of Iraq. By reinforcing the exchange of knowledge, skills and technical capacities among Iraqi nationals, the Government of Iraq can forward the mobilization of competencies of Iraqis abroad to enhance the country’s development. Despite the challenging security situation in the country, the workshop demonstrated the importance of a proactive approach by the Government of Iraq to create a network with high-value segments within the Iraqi diaspora keep to support future return.

Through a series of practical sessions and case studies, Michael Newson -IOM Regional Thematic Specialist in Labour Migration and Human Development- guided participants through a series of governmental strategies and policies implemented in the countries of China, India, Ireland, Korea and Taiwan, which have all taken bold steps to engage their diaspora.  These countries have proven to be success stories in the promotion of diaspora engagement, and have engaged their diasporas to positively contribute to their countries’ economic advancement. 

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