Building Resilience Through Hope: Migration and Sustainable Development at the 76th UN General Assembly
During the 76th General Assembly of the United Nations, IOM underscores the urgent need to include migrants in COVID-19 response and recovery efforts and harness the power of migration for sustainable development. COVID-19 has highlighted the importance of well-governed migration for prosperous and healthy societies, while demonstrating the negative impact of reduced human mobility on sustainable development. The UNGA’s 76th session theme, Building Resilience through Hope, speaks to the ways in which migrants can help build stronger, more inclusive, and resilient communities through their knowledge, networks and skills.
Only 3% of the world’s population are migrants, but they contribute 10% of the world’s GDP. These benefits have proven to be resilient during the COVID-19 crisis; defying predictions, remittances increased in many regions in 2020. Migration is vital to socio-economic recovery and growth both where migrants are from and where they are.
The UN General Assembly 76th session will kick off a series of international UN conferences in 2021 that are expected to highlight action and solutions that will ignite the transformations needed to secure healthy, peaceful and prosperous lives for all. As part of the UN System, IOM works to highlight the crucial role of migrants as agents of change throughout the UNGA, with a particular focus on the SDGs, COVID-19 and universal health coverage, xenophobia and discrimination, as well as food systems and climate change.
As we enter the second year of the Decade of Action, we must recognize that the 2030 Agenda cannot be achieved if migrants and displaced persons are left behind. When they are protected and empowered, migrants can help accelerate the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The UNGA’s 2021 SDG Moment shows that bold, urgent action for transformative change relies on collaborations across borders and all sectors of society.