Migratory Regimes in South America: An Analysis of the South American Conference on Migration The Third Cumbre of the Great Plains Omaha, April 28 th,
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Migratory Regimes in South America: An Analysis of the South American Conference on Migration The Third Cumbre of the Great Plains Omaha, April 28 th, 2007 Cristián Doña – Reveco Department of Sociology and Department of History Michigan State University
Introduction International Migration and International Relations Origins of this paper A strange (disciplinary) relationship Interdependence and regimes
Questions and Objectives How do states cooperatively debate or discuss about Int'l migration in a multilateral framework Which are the states’ objectives on taking this discussion to an Int'l arena. Analyze the origins and development of the South American Conference on Migration as an example of cooperative multilateral approach to Int'l migration.
Analytical approach (outline) Sources Definition of Int'l regimes A short history of the Conference Regional Consultative Processes Analysis of the Conference Conclusion Official documents An interview Personal experience
A note on current intra regional migration in South America Since the 1970s South America has experienced a constant increment in migration from within the region. Argentina (40pp) and Venezuela (33pp). In the last 35 years the majority of regional migrants are from bordering countries. The reduction of extra regional migration stocks and percentages has been associated to a higher mortality due to aging and to a return migration in some few cases
Foreign born population counted in countries of South America. Census rounds from 1970 to 2000
International Regimes Origins of the concept. Krasner’s classical definition: “sets of implicit or explicit principles, norms, rules, and decision-making procedures around which actor’s expectations converge in a given area of Int'l relations”. Int'l regimes represented an effort to theorize about Int'l governability; focusing on the rules and agreements that were thought to influence and define the behavior of governments.
A typology of international regimes Institutions WeakStrong Multilateralism Strong Refugees and political asylum (UNHCR) International Finances (IMF and World Bank) Weak International Labor Migration (ILO and IOM) Trade (GATT/WTO)
Regional consultative processes (RCPs) Int'l migration needs to be governed at the regional level. The conformation of RCP fosters the multilateralization of the discussion on policies and approaches toward Int'l migration. State owned process, thematically oriented or geographically based, flexible topics, yearly meetings, informal processes Organized by a IO
Regional consultative processes (RCPs) – IOM’s Definition Informal non binding groups, Representatives of government, IOs, sometimes, civil society and NGOs. Fora within which members exchange information and concerns with relation to int’l migration. In these loose fora, regional plans are develop with the objective of taking cooperative action on migration related issues, as well as, the groundwork for future multilateral agreements is laid
Regional consultative processes (RCPs) Weaknesses Countries don’t assume the agreements reached at annual conferences or take too long to implement, There is no punishment Lack of financing, diminish autonomy State sovereignty Currently there are RCP in almost every region of the world
Regional consultative processes (RCPs) Common topics to all RCPs 1.Promotion of exchange of information toward a common understanding of migration issues, 2.Protecting the fundamental rights of migrants including the right to non-discrimination, 3.Reinforcing efforts to prevent and combat undocumented or irregular migration including smuggling and trafficking, and 4.Assisted voluntary return as strategy to reduce irregular migration.
South American Conference on Migration Origin: Lima, 1999 South American meeting on migrations, integration and development. Six conferences and three technical meetings OIM serves as a technical secretariat
South American Conference on Migration Plan of action constructed along three main axis: a)To favor and develop every policy, program and action that ease the circulation, staying and residence of the nationals of the region’s countries within countries of the region; b)To coordinate actions that allow assistance and protection of the human rights of migrants, especially South American; c)To promote including the migratory variable on every bilateral and multilateral negotiating process related to economic, commercial and environmental agreements that are developed by the governments of the region
South American Conference on Migration Greatest achievement: to have become a legitimate forum for the exchange of opinions and information on the migratory processes that affect the countries of the region. Problems: Non binding fora. Relative strength: similar countries.
South American Conference on Migration Jorge Martínez: The main limitation is the other side of the coin of its main strength: being an intra regional consultation process between countries which socioeconomic and migratory specificities are not highly asymmetrical; that are part of a sub regional integration process, and are inscribed in a region with a common historical past and a culture with many affinities. These characteristics are the ones, to my understanding, that have shaped to a certain place the failure of the SACM, that is the same destiny of many different regional and sub regional integration initiatives. It seems that the more symmetric, the more political integration speeches, the greater recognition —although vague— of a Latin-American identity, the greater indifference towards a regional migratory governability.
South American Conference on Migration Example: OSUMI Space for the permanent production of strategic information to inform the decision-making processes on migratory issues, Originally considered a regional information network, focal points in each government, and a state-of-the- art Web Portal for the public and a governmental meeting place for the period between conferences, http://www.osumi-oim.org/
Conclusion Pessimistic: Probably it will never be more than a forum, There is no political will for it to grow, why? Donors prefer the Ibero-american Secretariat or other for a. Needs its own political organization, charter and financing (CEPAL and Gurrieri)