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Globalization a Globalization and Interdependence

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  Globalization and Interdependence: International Migration and DevelopmentStatement by Ambassador H.E. Dr. Palitha Kohona, Permanent Representative of Sri Lanka to the UnitedNationsSecond Committee of the 65th Session of the United Nations General AssemblyAgenda Item 22: Globalization and Interdependence: International Migration and DevelopmentMadame Chair,My delegation affiliates itself with the statement made by Yemen on behalf of the G77 & China, andappreciates the Report A/65/203 on this Agenda Item by the Secretary-General.The issue of migration deserves priority, both at national and international development discussions. SriLanka places migration high in its national development policy, given that an estimated 1.8 million Sri Lankans currently reside and work abroad. This is equal to 25% of the country’s total employable population and approximately 8% of the entire population. These migrant workers, whether they arehighly skilled professionals or semi-skilled workers, make a significant contribution both to their owncountry as well as to the host countries.The private remittances of Sri Lankan migrants have significantly augmented our foreign currencyreserves and the national income. It is estimated that private remittances this year will amount to approximately US$ 4.0 billion. As the Secretary General’s report noted, remittances have shown lower volatility than other income sources in the midst of the global economic crisis. However, Sri Lanka hopesto look beyond remittances in terms of utilizing migration in its development strategies.Sri Lanka is on the verge of rapid economic take off following the decisive conclusion of a three decadelong conflict with the terrorist LTTE. The Government is making large investments in infrastructure and developing productive assets so that Sri Lanka’s strengths will be optimized in this post -conflict scenario.We have taken many measures on migration management to ensure that migration becomes a keycontributor to national development.Sri Lanka considers that a rights based approach to the management of international migration is critical. Sri Lanka was one of the first countries to ratify the “International Convention on th e Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of Their Families”, which entered into force in 2003. The Convention has now been ratified by 42 States most of which are labour supplying countries. SriLanka considers this Convention to be a core human rights Convention and calls on all States to becomeparty to this Convention.   We observe that migrants working in the low-skilled segment face more difficulties than othercategories of migrant workers, including a lack of access to basic services. There is a paucity of international norms to protect workers in the informal sector, particularly domestic workers. Wecommend the leadership role played by the International Labour Organisation (ILO) in the promotion of a rights based approach to the management of labour migration. We note with satisfaction the adoptionof a resolution in June this year at the ILO Conference in Geneva calling for the drafting of aninternational Convention and a Supplementary Recommendation to extend labour standards and socialprotection to domestic workers.Madame Chair,Health is a fundamental human right and one that is critical for human development, and central to theMillennium Development Goals. A new aspect of the on-going debate on migration is the exclusion of many migrants from essential social services in receiving countries, particularly health services. Concernin connection with access to health services for migrants on the part of many receiving states formedthe basis of the resolution on the health of migrants, which was endorsed by the Sixty-first World HealthAssembly in May 2008, which was chaired by Sri Lanka. Following the adoption of this resolution, SriLanka is spearheading a multi-stakeholder and evidence based process towards developing a NationalPolicy on Health and Migration, with assistance from the International Organisation of Migration (IOM).We hope that this model could be emulated by other countries in addressing this important issue.On the subject of the human face of migration, I would like to highlight the excessive social cost of migration. Migration leads to a large scale breakdown of families, neglect of children and othernegative outcomes. This needs to be addressed with a sense of urgency. Women migration currentlystand s at 49% as underlined in the Secretary General’s Report. The general image of women migrants being a negative one calls for a gender-based approach to migration management. It is important to quantify women migrants’ contribution to the economies of both sending and receiving countries inorder to accord the recognition they deserve. Sri Lanka will continue to emphasize skilled migration anddiscourage unskilled female migration.Madame Chair,We adopted a National Labour Migration Policy in 2008 with the major objectives of better governanceand regulation of labour migration, providing effective protection and welfare services to migrantworkers and families, and mobilizing remittances effectively for development purposes. A multi-stakeholder Advisory Committee monitors the implementation of the National Policy, which will play acritical role in providing technical skills to our migrant workforce. In this context, Sri Lanka will beencouraging more skilled migration in the future.We have put in place the national mechanism to manage the issues related to migration by establishingthe Sri Lanka Bureau of Foreign Employment (SLBFE) through a Parliamentary Act. The mandate of this  institution includes assisting and supporting local agencies to negotiate employment agreements withagencies abroad and providing training at countrywide centres to migrant workers. There are legalpenalties to control illegal activities and human trafficking.Madame Chair,Sri Lanka believes that in the field of migration, regional consultative processes can play a key role. This was the reason for the Sri Lanka to initiate “The Colombo Process” in 2003 with the assistance of the International Organisation of Migration (IOM). The Colombo Process is a Regional Consultative Process(RCP) on the management of overseas employment and contractual labor for countries of srcin in Asia.Sri Lanka is looking forward to participating actively in the fourth Global Forum on Migration andDevelopment (GFMD) in Mexico from 8  – 11 of next month. The GFMD has become an importantplatform for the creation of international partnerships to optimize the benefits of migration towards thedevelopment of both sending and receiving states. The GFMD process will make an importantcontribution to the consideration of the nexus between migration and development at the High LevelDialogue on International Migration and Development at the General Assembly in 2013.In conclusion, in the context of our debate today focusing on international migration and developmentfrom the broader perspective of Globalization and interdependence, it is somewhat ironic thatglobalization has resulted in the world witnessing a rapidly increasing international integration of markets for consumer goods, technology, and all factors of production other than human resources. Inthe case of developing countries, this becomes an added structural disadvantage as the movement of people face restrictions.I would like to reiterate that, both in the context of national and international policy cooperation, a longterm approach needs to be taken to migration to optimize its utility as a development tool.I thank you Madame Chair.   HomeNewsAmbassadorMedia ReleasesStatementsConsularContact UsVacanciesAnnouncementsVisaHome Statements UNGA Statements 2008 Other An the General Debate of the 29th Session at theCommittee on Information By H.E. Prasad KariyawasamAn the General Debate of the 29th Session at the Committee on Information By H.E. PrasadKariyawasamWednesday, 02 May 2007 12:42At the outset, allow me to congratulate you on your election to chair this Committee and also to othermembers of the bureau. My delegation looks forward to working closely with you and your bureau in allyour endeavors. I also wish to extend sincere thanks of appreciation to Ambassador Motoc of Romaniafor his leadership and to the members of the previous bureau for their hard work.May I extend my warm felicitation to Mr. Kiyo Akasaka on his appointment as the Under-Secretary-General for Communications and Public Information. I wish Mr. Akasaka all success in fulfilling hismission of giving voice to the United Nations and its activities and look forward to work with him toobtain a greater profile for the UN, worldwide. I would like to take this opportunity to warmly thank Mr.Shahsi Tharoor for his diligent work in projecting the image of the United Nations around the globe.We also welcome The Dominican Republic and Thailand as members of the Committee on Information.My delegation wishes to align itself with the Statement made by the delegation of Pakistan on behalf of the G-77 and China.Sri Lanka commends DPI for its efforts to develop more strategic approach in promoting globalawareness and greater understanding of the work of the UN. My delegation appreciates the work of theDPI in promoting issues of importance to the international community such as Human rights,International Migration and Development, illicit trafficking of Small Arms, MDG's, Peacekeeping,Counter Terrorism, and humanitarian relief, among others.Many developing countries lack resources and technical means to access information including those of UN's activities and achievements. And some developing countries are information-isolated, and few canafford to update their knowledge bases. In this regard, we reckon that the Internet speeds upcommunication, increases the radius of contact, and reduces needs of local libraries and paperpublications. Internet promises extraordinary opportunities for developing countries although notsufficient to close to the knowledge gap. In this context, the UN websites are an essential tool by which
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