IOM Tajikistan Today
Dushanbe, 18 November 2014 – Engaging Tajik diaspora in the development of Tajikistan was the focus of a technical meeting organized by IOM Tajikistan last week. Participants in the meeting represented an array of relevant sectors and were brought together to discuss the engagement of diaspora as well as other issues concerning the regulation of migration processes.
Mahmadulloev Nurullo, Deputy Minister of Labor, Migration and Employment (MLME), told attendees that diaspora involvement is a high priority for the government. He said the government adopted an action plan in 2011 on the “Engagement of Tajik Diaspora as Development Partners” and explained specific activities carried out within this plan between 2011 and 2014.
The new action plan for 2015-2020 was developed by Inter-ministerial Commission, with the support of IOM. The government will adopt the new plan by the end of the year.
In her speech, IOM Tajikistan Chief of Mission Tajma Kurt discussed the ways in which Tajik diaspora can help development efforts beyond sending remittances. She stressed that the meetings, forums, and trainings conducted by IOM provide a good platform for dialogue between the government and diaspora organizations.
The meeting also featured presentations by Moyonsho Mahmadbekov from MLME’s Population Migration Department; Marina Manke from IOM Vienna; and Zuhursho Rahmatulloev from a UK diaspora organization named “Peshraft.”
Mahmadbekov explained the details of the 2011-2014 plan and what needs to be done by various agencies to implement the 2015-2020 plan.Manke, a regional labor migration and human development specialist, shared effective practices from other countries on how to engage diaspora organizations.
Rahmatulloev introduced participants to the mission and activities of Peshraft and explained the importance of government support for such organizations abroad, especially in countries besides Russia. According to him, Peshraft builds effective partnerships with Tajik citizens living in the UK and it uses fundraising to run projects on education, charity, arts, sports and career development.
The meeting included a question and answer session that focused on matters such as the status of diaspora children born abroad; obtaining citizenship in destination countries; and effectively engaging diaspora in Tajikistan’s development.
It is planned that recommendations presented by participants at the technical meeting will be reviewed at the next inter-ministerial commission to improve implementation of the 2015-2020 action plan.
The day after the technical meeting, IOM conducted a session for MLME’s Migration Service (MS) staff. Participants improved their knowledge of diaspora capacity and of cooperation with diaspora, which can be used for the development of economic, educational, and social spheres. MS staff members received information about worldwide experience engaging diaspora, with a focus on countries in the region such as Armenia, Moldova, and Afghanistan. Special attention was given to activities using new IT technology that can help compile information on diaspora and compatriot capacity, skills, and knowledge.
The Operational Strategy 2012-2015 identifies the key thematic challenges and priorities guiding IOM's programmatic interventions in Tajikistan in the upcoming years.