Eleventh meeting | ASIA DIALOGUE ON FORCED MIGRATION | March 2022

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  • Eleventh meeting | ASIA DIALOGUE ON FORCED MIGRATION | March 2022

Key documents for the eleventh ADFM meeting:

On 24 March 2022 the Asia Dialogue on Forced Migration (ADFM) convened virtually for part one of its eleventh meeting. 

The meeting focused on opportunities for reform of the Bali Process on People Smuggling, Trafficking in Persons and Related Transnational Crime (Bali Process) on its twentieth anniversary this year. The ADFM has worked closely with the Bali Process since its inception in 2015 to strengthen the multilateral body’s ability to address forced migration in the Indo Pacific. This includes considerable work in 2016 following the Andaman Sea crisis.

The March meeting was an opportunity to come together to discuss the proposals and opportunities to reform the Bali Process to allow it to better enhance regional cooperation on forced migration issues. 

We were delighted to welcome the distinguished Foreign Ministers of Indonesia and Malaysia to the meeting to provide opening remarks, as well as senior government officials from eight countries, international organisations and civil society representatives. 

There was general enthusiasm and support in the meeting for reform of the Bali Process to enable it to be more responsive and adaptive to the evolving challenges of forced migration in our region. Participants emphasised that ongoing crises in Afghanistan, Myanmar and most recently Ukraine underscore the importance of not only responding to crises as they occur but being prepared for future events. 

A high-level summary of the meeting outlines the key themes of discussion, as well as recommendations which received particular support. These include prioritising early warning capabilities through the Taskforce on Planning and Preparedness (TFPP), investing in technical capabilities and less formal meetings in order to make the most of the Bali Process’s strengths in capacity-building, strengthening and clarifying the mandate of the Regional Support Office (RSO) streamlining existing work streams and groups, based on a stocktake of what members most value and elevating engagement with other regional bodies including ASEAN and BIMSTEC , and also the private sector through the Government and Business Forum (GABF).

As a result of the meeting, the ADFM Secretariat has agreed to take the following actions:

  • Begin work on a stocktake of the Bali Process to determine the most effective structures and working groups going forward, ahead of the twentieth anniversary.
  • Further develop the recommendations which received particular support and elaborate on how these could be practically implemented.
  • Convene a follow up virtual ADFM meeting in June to discuss regional trends in forced migration and what more can be done collectively to respond including bilaterally and mini-laterally.
  • Conduct a strategic assessment of regional priorities for forced migration responses over the next 5-10 years, including the role of the Bali Process.

The ADFM Secretariat will be in touch with participants individually about these next steps. We welcome ideas for collaboration or further engagement on any of these actions.

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