IOM programmes in Benin are currently oriented more towards Migration and Development and Labour Migration activities.
In September 2005, at the request of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Benin, IOM funded the project “Mobilization of Qualified Benin Diaspora and Identification of Benin’s Needs in Terms of Scientific and Technical Expertise”. This project is, first, an initiative to identify needs for scientific and technical expertise and secondly, a framework for mobilizing Beninese migrant workers able to fulfill these needs for the development of the country.
Furthermore, a Ministerial Conference of Least Developed Countries (LDCs) on the transfer of migrants' funds (Remittances) was held in Cotonou, Benin in February 2006. It was jointly organized by the Government of the Republic of Benin, IOM and the Office of the High Representative of the United Nations Least Developed Countries, Developing Countries Landlocked and Small Island Developing States (OHRLLS) with financial support from the Special Unit for South-South Cooperation Programme for the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), Norway, Ireland and The World Bank.
Following this Conference, a Ministerial Declaration was adopted. It recommended, inter alia, the creation of an Observatory of remittances of migrants from LDCs. Benin has been chosen to host the headquarters. The Declaration also called upon IOM and other relevant organizations to take initiatives and actions required to support it.
Benin has made available a building that temporarily housed the headquarters of the Observatory. IOM funded a feasibility study in Cotonou to assess the capacity of Benin to host the Observatory.
IOM continues to support the Government of Benin through its projects and financial mobilization in Benin.
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