There are currently close to 300 million migrants around the globe, representing 3.6 per cent of the world’s population. Today we mark International Migrants Day, a day to honour these migrants, recognize their immense contribution to mankind, and stress the importance of upholding their rights and dignity. Migrants contribute their knowledge, networks, and skills to build stronger, more resilient communities at home and abroad.
In Bangladesh, approximately one million Bangladeshi nationals go abroad every year, and which has amounted to more than 13 million citizens migrating internationally since 1976. Bangladesh sends the 6th most migrants abroad of any country in the world and receives the 8th highest remittances.
Bangladesh continues to play a pioneering role in implementing the Global Compact on Migration (GCM) and has been officially recognized as a GCM “champion country.” The Bangladesh United Nations Network on Migration, and the wider UN Network on Migration, remains committed to supporting Bangladesh to govern migration for the benefit of all.
Migrants often move internationally in pursuit of employment opportunities in countries that are not similar to their own. Some cross continents and oceans - taking significant risks - to join new societies with different languages, religious practices, foods, and cultural norms.
The current global political and health situations pose challenges to human mobility. However, these also represent an opportunity to build more inclusive and resilient societies where well-managed migration allows governments, communities and individuals to maximize the benefits and potential of human mobility.
On this day, let’s remind ourselves of the value of migrants and migration in opening up our societies, expanding our horizons, and contributing to our development. Let’s shape our future together, leaving no one behind.
Director General, International Organization for Migration (IOM)