Canada adopts historic agreement to address migration

December 13, 2018

By Government of Canada Newsroom |

Migration Compact is the first, globally negotiated, cooperative framework to facilitate safe, orderly and regular migration

Canada believes that effective international cooperation is essential in order to address common challenges as well as harness the benefits of global migration.

Today, Canada announced it adopted the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration (GCM), the first global framework on all aspects of international migration. The Honourable Ahmed Hussen, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship, made the announcement at the Intergovernmental Conference to Adopt the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration in Marrakech, Morocco.

The GCM acknowledges the serious challenges that irregular migration poses, while emphasizing the positive contributions of migrants, and the benefits of regular pathways and well-managed migration systems. Migrant and refugee flows are a growing phenomenon around the world. According to the United Nations, there are currently about 258 million people on the move. Of these, 68.5 million are forcibly displaced people – including refugees and asylum seekers – who are forced to flee their homes in search of new ones due to violence, discrimination and war.

The Compact sets out 23 objectives, each focusing on one aspect of migration. Participating states are not expected to implement each action, but to view them as examples of best practices on how to achieve the objectives. It emphasizes state sovereignty as a guiding principle and that it is a state’s sovereign right to control its own borders.

Canada has been actively engaged in the development of the GCM. This includes the majority of the almost 200 action items, which reflect Canadian practices and are aligned with the compact’s objectives and commitments. Following more than a year of negotiations, this is an important milestone and represents the first multilateral framework for the global response to migration.

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