Ease of mobility and skills recognition seen as priorities in wide-ranging India-EU migration agenda

The International Labour Organization and International Centre for Migration Policy Development (ICMPD) hosted a dialogue on migration and mobility between India and the EU.

Press release | New Delhi, India | 26 September 2017
NEW DELHI (ILO News): At a dialogue on migration and mobility between India and the EU, on September 26, a recurring theme was the complementarity between the two partners, and how India’s demographic profile offers solutions to Europe’s labour markets. Nearly one quarter of the global workforce will be Indian by 2025. “Ease of mobility of professionals is key to the ease of doing business,” said Manish Gupta, Joint Secretary, Ministry of External Affairs, Government of India. “There needs to be mutual recognition of skills and academic qualifications.”

Panellists discusss key focus areas for enhanced cooperation on mobility and migration between India and the EU
The meeting continued the implementation of the India-EU Common Agenda on Migration and Mobility (CAMM) signed last year, and comes ahead of the upcoming India-EU Summit to be held in Delhi in October 2017. The CAMM addresses four pillars: better organized regular migration and the fostering of well-managed mobility; prevention of irregular migration and trafficking in human beings; maximizing the development impact of migration and mobility; and promotion of international protection.

When discussing the symbiotic relationship between business and mobility, NilaKanthi Ford, the Chair of the Ireland-India Business Association, said “Policy needs to work alongside business. Governments and industries need to accommodate the growth of new areas of work and trade. More attention to investment-linked mobility both to and from India is essential.”

Tomasz Kozlowski, Ambassador of the European Union to India, highlighted the upward trend in mobility for Indians to the EU in the last two years. “28 per cent of all EU Blue Cards – meant for highly qualified workers – were issued to Indian nationals in 2016.” Attracting talent to Europe was recognized as an important objective for the EU. The EU Blue Card helps professionals to work in 25 of the 28 EU Member States.

On student mobility, Dr. Rupa Chanda, Professor at the Indian Institute of Management, Bangalore, said “Language and culture are less of a barrier now. What is missing is adequate financing, scholarships and network of academic institutions.” While anglophone countries still attract Indian students, in recent times Germany, Italy, and the Netherlands too have been drawing Indian students.

Dr. Dnyeshwar Mulay, Secretary at the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA), underlined that well-managed migration is a priority for the Indian Government. He recalled the slogan of the Government: Surakshit jaye, prashikshit jaye [“Go safe, go trained”]. “It used to be said that geography is destiny. I believe that nowadays connectivity is destiny and that reduced distances, and mobility provide immense opportunities for humanity to prosper.”

For further information, please contact:
Seeta Sharma
ILO DWT for South Asia and Country Office for India
India Habitat Centre
Core 4B, 3rd Floor
New Delhi
Ph: 91- 11-47509200

Diya Banerjee
Communications and Knowledge Management Officer
ILO Decent Work Team for South Asia and Country Office for India
Tel.: 91-11-47509211