‘Organization For Security And Co-Operation In Europe’ (OSCE) – Met With NGO’s In Vienna

Fostering resilience of local communities is key to recovering from migration crisis, conclude participants in OSCE expert meeting in Vienna

Expert meeting on strengthening resilience of local communities to the presence of migrants, 4 July 2017, Hofburg, Vienna. (OSCE)


VIENNA, 4 July 2017 – Fostering the resilience of local communities, making migrants a resource for the socio-economic development of hosting societies, was discussed today in Vienna by almost 70 participants in an expert meeting hosted by the OSCE.

“Our attention is focused on people, migrants and hosting communities,” said Co-ordinator of OSCE Economic and Environmental Activities Vuk Žugić. “The lives and socio-economic prospects of all individuals involved in large movement of people must be our priority.”

“This is possible only if we re-build trust and confidence, not only among participating States, but also within communities, between citizens and state institutions and international organizations,” said Ambassador Christian Strohal, reiterating the key priority of the Austrian 2017 OSCE Chairmanship. “The positive contribution that migrants can bring to societies depends also on the opportunities given to them. The OSCE can play an important role in facilitating that agenda.”

Building broad-based coalitions is the overall objective of the OSCE forum for dialogue, said Director of the Office of the OSCE Secretary General Paul Bekkers. “If migration is emerging as perhaps the most decisive issue facing our increasingly interdependent societies today, migration management is the make-it or break-it test for governments.”

Bekkers added that the discussion today served as a brick in a bridge between the international community and local governments and communities, between the global and local levels.

The goal of the meeting was to translate identified possibilities for action into concrete initiatives for dealing constructively with the consequences of migration. The debate and the way forward will be summarized in a report that will be published soon.

Žugić noted that his Office is keen to contribute through the promotion of good governance and the improvement of the business climate, a key expertise of his Office. “Our intention is to explore which socio-economic factors can best support the positive adaptation of the communities involved to the presence of migrants. We wish to understand better how these complex relationships can be improved to make the newcomers active contributors to socio-economic recovery.” 

The meeting gathered national and international experts in the field of migration governance, including representatives of international and regional organizations – the International Labour Organization (ILO), the International Organization for Migration (IOM), the United Nations’ Development Programme (UNDP), the Central European Initiative (CEI), the International Centre for Migration Policy Development (ICMPD) – think tanks, OSCE executive structures and Institutions, academia and research entities and  civil society.

[Source: OSCE -/- Media Relations]
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