United Nations Statistical Commission

Overview   49th Session (2018)   Side Events

High-Level panel on


  • Monday, 5 MAR 2018
  • 10:00 am – 1:00 pm
  • Conference Room 11

Meeting organized by United Nations Statistics Division and Population Division
Department of Economic and Social Affairs

The momentum to improve international migration statistics has never been stronger.

For many years, the General Assembly has called for accurate, timely and disaggregated statistics on international migration. The adoption of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development (A/70/1) and the New York Declaration for Refugees and Migrants (A/71/1) have added further urgency to the need to strengthen national capacities to collect and use migration statistics and data to develop evidence-based migration policies and to integrate migration into national development planning.

The 2030 Agenda recognizes international migration as an integral part of sustainable development. The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) include migration-related targets on labour standards, human trafficking, transfer costs of remittances, etc. Target 10.7 calls on countries to facilitate safe, orderly and regular migration and to implement well-managed migration policies. Keeping track of the implementation of SDGs constitutes an unprecedented challenge for national statistical systems. The principle of "leaving no one behind" compels countries to disaggregate relevant targets by, inter alia, migratory status.

The New York Declaration for Refugees and Migrants recognizes the need for improved national data collection and international cooperation on migration statistics. It calls for the disaggregation of migration data by sex and age, and the inclusion of information on regular and irregular flows, the economic impacts of migration and refugee movements, human trafficking, the needs of refugees, migrants and host communities and other issues. The zero-draft of the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration, presented by the co-facilitators on 5 February 2018, foresees in paragraph 15 a role of the United Nations Statistical Commission in improving migration data, while paragraphs 43 to 46 contain draft provisions for follow-up and review.

This side event offers an opportunity for Member States, the international statistical community, and relevant international organizations to (a) review and discuss the unprecedented demands for migration data and statistics emerging from recent global initiatives, and (b) share good practices and national strategies to strengthen international migration statistics. The event will consider how national statistical systems can respond to the demands for migration statistics in order to implement the 2030 Agenda and the New York Declaration, and discuss how international community can lend support to these efforts by strengthening national and regional institutions and capacities.

    Preliminary Agenda

  1. Moderator: Ms. Grace Bediako, Acting Director-General, National Development Planning Commission and Chairman, Ghana Statistical Service Board

  2. Panel 1. New global frameworks and the call for better migration data and statistics  10:00 - 11:20
  3. The panel will provide an overview of key global initiatives recently launched by the international community and their implications for better migration data.

  4. Panelists:
  5. Ms. Louise Arbour, Special Representative for International Migration - Global milestones on migration in recent years and their implications for data: From the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development to the New York Declaration for Refugees and Migrants
  6. Mr. Juan Jose Gómez Camacho, Permanent Representative of Mexico to the United Nations in New York and Mr. Lauber Jürg, Permanent Representative of Switzerland to the United Nations in New York - The Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration and its implication for migration statistics
  7. Mr. Tore Hattrem, Permanent Representative of Norway to the United Nations in New York - The New York Declaration for Refugees and Migrants: how can the statistical community respond to the call for better migration statistics?
  8. Ms. Lisa Bersales, National Statistician, Philippines Statistical Authority, Philippines - The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development: how can the statistical community respond to measuring the migration-related targets and indicators?
  9. Q&A

  10.  11:20 - 11:40 Coffee break

  11.  11:40 - 13:00 Panel 2: Improving migration statistics at the national level in light of new global frameworks on migration
  12. Country representatives will share their activities and plans to strengthen national statistical systems and meet the growing demand for migration data in light of the new global frameworks, including the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, the New York Declaration for Refugees and Migrants and the forthcoming Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration. Panelists will discuss how to improve the use of existing data sources and statistical tools, including by integrating different data sources, non-traditional data sources, coordination efforts within national statistical systems, and the need for capacity building in the realm of strengthening the collection and use of migration data.

  13. Issues to consider:
  14. What are the implications of global and national development frameworks for improving migration statistics in your country?
  15. What are some of the current activities and ongoing initiatives to improve migration statistics?
  16. Outlook for the future: what are the major challenges? How can the international community lend its support?

  17. Panelists:
  18. Mr. Bernd Störtzbach, Head of Division Planning and Co-ordination, International Cooperation, Legal Matters Concerning Statistics, Federal Statistical Office, Germany
  19. Ms. Carol Coy, Director General, Statistical Institute of Jamaica, Jamaica
  20. Mr. Qasem Al-Zoubi, Director General, Department of Statistics of Jordan, Jordan
  21. Mr. Sergey Egorenko, Deputy Head, Federal State Statistics Service, Russian Federation
  22. Q&A

  • Global Migration Group statement

  • Background documents:
  • Transforming our world: the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development
  • Official list of SDG indicators
  • New York Declaration for Refugees and Migrants
  • Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration, zero draft

  • Upcoming session



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