Migration for Development has long been a strategic focus of IOM’s work, to maximize the positive relationship which exists between migration and development. The programme’s objective is to contribute to the international community’s goal of harnessing the development potential of migration, to benefit host societies and migrants. 

IOM implements programme activities in the form of research, capacity building for governments and communities, community stabilization in countries that have undergone conflict, delivery of social programmes, community development, engaging diaspora communities with their countries of origin, and partnership building with relevant institutions, authorities and business.

IOM also provides a full range of services tailored to the needs of governments, aimed at transferring skills and knowledge acquired by migrants abroad to their country of origin. These services include outreach, selection, matching, placement, compensation, reintegration, monitoring, and evaluation activities. A recent focus has been placed on the facilitation of remittances—the private financial transfers of migrants—and the development impact that they can have on communities and countries of origin.

One of the major challenges to development facing Tanzania and many other African countries is the loss of valuable human resources associated with high emigration flows. This process has affected several key sectors like health and education, and has contributed to a huge human resource gap in terms of skilled professionals. Globally, among governments, agencies and other actors involved in development issues, there is an increasing trend of recognizing the human resource gap as a case of brain drain and to explore avenues for diaspora to contribute to development in their home countries.

IOM’s Migration for Development in Africa (MIDA) initiative was created over a decade ago to address the human resource gap by engaging the diaspora in short term assignments in their home countries and through the transfer and sharing of knowledge and skills. Tanzania’s first ever diaspora conference was held in 2014.

IOM has run the past projects in Tanzania in close collaboration with the Government of Tanzania:

  • Formulation of the National Diaspora Framework
  • Study on Remittance Flows between Uganda and Tanzania
  • Enhancing Labour Migration Management Capacity of Government Officials

The following projects are currently being run:

  • Enhancing the migration evidence base for the development of Tanzania. This project is funded by IOM Development Fund and aims to improve the evidence base on migration through the creation of a national Migration Profile and the creation of a Diaspora Web portal.
  • Supporting the Government to formulate strategic interventions towards effective and sustainable labour migration management and information sharing in Tanzania. 
Enhancing the Migration Evidence Base for the Development of Tanzania

To date, over 70 countries across the world are using Migration Profiles as a basis for internal and external consultative processes on how the positive aspects of migration can be harnessed for economic and social development. This is conceived as a concise statistical report, prepared according to a common framework, which make it easier to understand “at a glance” the migration situation in a Tanzania. This publication is developed through multi-stakeholder consultation, reflecting the migration situation in Tanzania, including:

  • Migration trends and characteristics (migrant flows and stocks);
  • Information on how migration impacts development (for example, education, economic growth, social protection, health, food security, etc.);
  • Information on the migration governance framework (including policy and legislation) and information on international cooperation initiative

Why does Tanzania Need a Migration Profile?

  • There is limited empirical evidence showing high levels of mobility in Tanzania, but there is not enough data to further analyze the nature and developmental impact of migration in Tanzania
  • In order to developing effective migration policies and ensure their coherence with other policy areas, policymakers need a comprehensive and reliable knowledge base.  Migration Profiles fulfill the need for such evidence.
  • Beyond providing essential statistical evidence on migratory flows in the country, Migration Profiles are a starting bloc for launching structured national dialogues on migration and development and taking concrete steps towards harnessing the positive aspects of migration for all areas of development

What is a Diaspora Web Portal?

  • It is a web site, designed particularly to facilitate contacts and communicationbetween Tanzanians living abroad (members of the diaspora) and the GoT
  • The portal will offer various resources for diaspora members to become involved in activitiesto enhance development in Tanzania, including job skills matching.

 Why does Tanzania need a diaspora Web Portal?

  • While it’s assumed that a large number of Tanzanian’s are living abroad, there is little knowledge on the composition of the diaspora, including their profiles, skills, and numbers.
  • There are currently few means available facilitating temporary return programs, virtual skill transfers, remittances (social, financial and others) etc. The diaspora web portal could therefore enable the involvement of Tanzania’s diaspora.