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LDC IV Conference calls for facilitating migration and remittance flows, and fostering their development impact

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The program of action of the Fourth United Nations Conference on the Least Developed Countries, Istanbul, 9-13 May 2011 explicitly calls for reducing remittance costs and improving the development impact of remittances.

The conference calls on the LDCs to:

 (a) Make efforts to improve access to financial and banking services for easy transaction of remittances;
 (b) Simplify migration procedures to reduce the cost of   outward migration;
 (c) Take appropriate measures to better utilize knowledge,  skills and earnings of the returning migrants;
 (d) Provide necessary information, as available, to workers seeking foreign employment. 

The conference identifies the following action items by development partners:

 (a) Resist unfair and discriminatory treatment of migrant workers and the imposition of unreasonable restrictions on labour migration in order to maximize the benefits of international migration, while complying with the relevant national legislation and applicable international instruments; 

 (b) Consider developing, where appropriate and in accordance with domestic laws, a system of short-term migration, including workers from least developed countries; 

 (c) Remove unnecessary restrictions on outward remittances and support the lowering of transaction costs; 

 (d) Consider supporting the least developed countries in establishing the International Migrants Remittance Observatory, on a voluntary basis.

The conference also calls on the development community to "undertake measures to enhance understanding, coordination and cooperation with regard to climate change-induced displacement, migration and planned relocation, where appropriate, at national, regional and international levels.


Dilip Ratha

Lead Economist and Economic Adviser to the Vice President of Operations, Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency, World Bank

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