Message from the Chair-in-office
On behalf of the Government of Nepal, it is with great privilege and honour that I express our sincere gratitude to all the Member States for passing on the baton to Nepal as Chair of the Colombo Process. We believe this is an important opportunity for Nepal to lead the CP and further build on the progress, experiences and learning we have experienced together towards coordinating on labour migration in the region.
I would like to commend Sri Lanka for successfully chairing the Colombo Process through 2013-2016, while congratulating the Government of Sri Lanka and the outgoing Chair, Hon. Thalatha Atukorale, Minister of Foreign Employment, Sri Lanka for their leadership. My appreciation also goes to the Member States leading the five thematic working groups which have been instrumental in facilitating the dialogues among member states to identify and initiate actions at national and regional levels.
Today, worldwide more than 200 million migrants are on the move for economic opportunities, peace and security, of which Asia accounts for approximately half of the international migrants. We, the Member States of the Colombo Process, are faced with similar challenges and issues in managing labour migration and harnessing the benefits to contribute to economic prosperity.
This is thus an opportune time for us, as Colombo Process Member States, to come together to ensure humane, orderly, safe and dignified migration in line with human rights principles and international obligations.
For this, Nepal will, in close consultation and coordination with the Member States, further build on the previous decisions and recommendations of the Colombo Process for strengthening inter-state cooperation with other existing forums, such as the Abu Dhabi Dialogue, for the welfare of labour migrants and their families.
Lastly, I gratefully appreciate and thank the International Organization for Migration, the Swiss Agency for Development Cooperation and other development partners for their continued interest and sustained support commencing from the genesis of the Colombo Process.
As Chair of the Colombo Process, we look forward to continued cooperation, support and collaboration with Member States, observers and development partners to achieve the objectives of the Colombo Process.
Hon. Surya Man Gurung
Minister for Labour and Employment, Nepal