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We must harness the true strength of migration

The view of Special Representative of the UN Secretary General for Migration.


Migration is one of the morally, politically, and economically defining issues of the 21st century. Some 25,000 souls have died trying to cross the Mediterranean since 2000, including over more than 1,500 so far in 2015, and many thousands more have perished in the Gulf of Aden and in the South Pacific.


The immigration debate will never be an easy one, but it can become less tendentious and more deliberative if its participants consider the facts. This is equally relevant in the international realm as well, and specifically in the context of the post-2015 UN development agenda. This is, in fact, is a once-in-a-generation moment. Two decades ago, the membership of the International Organisation for Migration consisted of just a few dozen countries. It now stands at over 150.


Migration—when it takes place in a safe, orderly, and responsible way—contributes powerfully to countries of origin and destination, and above all to the families of migrants. Migration deserves to be a prominent part of the post-2015 agenda. We have overwhelming evidence that smart policy interventions can help us protect the rights of migrants, suppress the activities of bad actors, and draw out the economic, social, and human benefits of migration.

-> Read the article on the oecd website

-> See Peter Sutherland’s speech on migration delivered at the OECD in December 2014

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