Australian Permanent Mission and Consulate-General
Switzerland, Liechtenstein


International Organization for Migration

102nd Session of the Council

Australian Statement

Geneva, Switzerland
14 June 2013


Thank you Mr Chair.

It is with pleasure that I congratulate the Director-General Ambassador Swing on his re-election and convey Australia’s full support for his continuing leadership of this organisation.

Ambassador Swing has overseen a period of change and growth of IOM while reinforcing its essence as a state-led organisation. Member states are increasingly working with an IOM which is more transparent, accountable and responsive to the challenges of international migration. As Ambassador Swing has noted time and again, as member states, IOM is our organisation, and he has reached out to member states to drive institutional reform as well as promoting an internal organisational drive toward flexibility and leanness of operation.

He has also continued to strengthen IOM's practical, solutions-focused approach to working with member states on migration issues. For Australia, IOM is an important partner in the design and delivery of projects which benefit migrants and states in our region. Our cooperation through the Bali Process and the Regional Support Office in Bangkok remains a primary example, and one where the Director General's support has been particularly valuable.

Expertise in migration, and the sharing of that expertise, is one of IOM's great strengths. This is evident both in the field, where projects are implemented and where the migration challenges presented by crises are addressed, and at the policy level, where IOM contributes to research, guidance and cooperation between states, through such initiatives as the International Dialogue on Migration.

Australia is pleased to have a strong working relationship with IOM at the institutional and policy level as we focus on the High Level Dialogue on Migration and Development later this year and follow through to the post-2015 development agenda. The next five years will present IOM and its member states with the challenges of addressing the practical, operational needs of states and migrants in the context of increasingly complex global patterns of human mobility. IOM will also need to continue to assess these global trends and enhance its strategic priorities as an organisation to determine its course in the international sphere.

Our Director General will take up the challenge to progress these complementary aspects of IOM's identity as the leading international body for migration.

We look forward, in five years’ time, to reflecting on another term of growth, development and cooperation with IOM and with Ambassador Swing as Director General. We look forward to working with IOM to further enhance our understanding of the complexities of contemporary migration and its role in contributing to the prosperity of communities, and we look forward to member states and migrants sharing the benefits that well-managed migration will bring.

Thank you.