Global Forum on Migration and Development: German‑Moroccan co‑chairmanship 2017–2018

09.01.2017 - Article

Germany and Morocco jointly assumed the chairmanship of the Global Forum on Migration and Development (GFMD) on 1 January 2017.

Germany’s GFMD engagement

Co‑chairmanship of the Global Forum on Migration and Development 2017–2018: Germany and Morocco
Co‑chairmanship of the Global Forum on Migration and Development 2017–2018: Germany and Morocco© GFMD

In 2017, the GFMD’s motto is “Towards a Global Social Contract on Migration and Development”. The main focus will be on balancing the interests between migrants and their countries of origin, transit states and destinations within the framework of regular and orderly migration. The 2017 Government Meeting will take place in Berlin at ministerial level from 28 to 30 June.

The work of the GFMD in 2017 will contribute to the United Nations Global Compact on Migration, which is intended to send a strong signal from the international community for an enhanced global migration policy and is to be adopted by the community of states in 2018.

A co‑chairmanship comprising two states is heading the Forum for the first time since the GFMD was established in 2007. At a time when migration policy issues are on the political agenda in many parts of the world, Germany and Morocco are spotlighting the positive aspects of and the preconditions for orderly, secure and regular migration through their model cooperation. The symbolic bridge formed across the Mediterranean region and the close ties between Europe and Africa will send a clear message for the further development of global migration goals.

The Federal Government has appointed Götz Schmidt‑Bremme as Germany’s ambassador for the GFMD co‑chairmanship 2017–2018.


The goals of the GFMD are:

  • to provide an informal framework in which political decision‑makers can discuss relevant legislation as well as the practical challenges and opportunities of migration and development and consult with other stakeholders, including non‑governmental organisations, experts and migrant organisations to elaborate action‑oriented results at national, bilateral and international level;
  • to exchange experiences and best practice which could be replicated or adapted in other situations to make the most of the development advantages of migration and migration flows;
  • to identify political and institutional relationships necessary to promote synergies and greater coherence between the fields of migration and development policy at national, regional and international level;
  • to establish partnerships and cooperation between states as well as between states and other players such as international organisations, diaspora organisations, migrants, universities, etc. on migration and development;
  • to shape the international priorities and agenda for migration and development.


The host country (chair) is responsible for preparing and implementing the Government Meeting. The chair is supported by the state that organised the previous meeting and the country that will take over the chairmanship from it. Together, these three states comprise the GFMD Troika.

The GFMD Steering Group consists of governments which actively work to provide long‑term political and conceptual support for the Forum process and the current chair and guarantees process continuity. It has a good regional balance and its make‑up takes account of different migration perspectives.

The GFMD Friends of the Forum are open to all United Nations member states and observers. They ensure that all United Nations member states and observers are informed of developments in the Forum and discuss the agenda, structure and form of the separate Government Meeting sessions.

GFMD cooperation with other international organisations and interest groups

The United Nations and other international organisations, above all the International Organization for Migration (IOM), as well as academic, private sector and civil society organisations, are involved in the process to the extent that this is appropriate and desired by governments.

Cooperation with the United Nations

The close relationship between the GFMD and the United Nations is fostered by the Special Representative of the Secretary‑General for International Migration and Development and the Global Migration Group. The GFMD Government Meeting reports are submitted to the United Nations via the Secretary‑General.

Civil society

The Civil Society Days held around the time of the Government Meeting have proved their worth as a place to discuss contributions from civil society and formulate recommendations and action plans for governments. A common space during the GFMD Government Meeting provides a platform for open dialogue between governments and civil society.

Further information: GFMD civil society

Business Mechanism

As an employer, the private sector is an important government partner within the GFMD framework. Governments, enterprises and civil society share a common interest in achieving a transparent and humane migration policy which does justice both to the needs of the labour market and to the international recognised rights of employees. To this end, the GFMD Business Mechanism holds an annual thematic workshop on relevant issues.

Further information: GFMD Business Mechanism

Find out more:

Global Forum on Migration and Development

Refugee and migration issues - what German foreign policy is doing

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