Silk Routes

Like few other regions in the world, the Silk Routes region is characterised by mobility. The new ICMPD project aims to help maximising its development potential of migration and mobility.


The countries of the Silk Routes region are all affected by large migration flows and several of them are dealing with protracted refugee situations. Some countries are sending migrants, some are receiving countries, and others experience immigration, emigration and transit simultaneously. Maximising the development potential of migration and mobility within the Silk Routes region and towards major labour receiving countries remains a top priority. 


Thus, 2017 marked the beginning of a major programme for the Silk Routes Region following the completion of the Silk Routes Partnership project under the Budapest Process. Funded by the European Union, it takes forward many of the initiatives launched under the previous project between 2014 and 2017. It aims to reach its potential with full respect of human rights and the protection of migrants. The new programme supports the political dialogue under the Budapest Process and works towards its operationalisation, especially through initiatives in the areas of migration governance and mobility.


It continues providing policy-making support in the area of migration, in particular to Afghanistan on a Comprehensive Migration Policy, to Iraq on a Diaspora Engagement Policy and to Pakistan on a National Emigration and Welfare Policy for Overseas Pakistanis. The expansion of the network of Migrant Resource Centres to all Silk Routes countries and the operationalisation of the regional law enforcement cooperation to counteract migrant smuggling and human trafficking are also being carried forward. In addition, funds are being made available under a facility on a needs-based, demand driven basis for short-term technical assistance and for larger-scale projects through a Call for Proposals. Furthermore, a new focus is being placed on the protection of migrant workers’ rights through a new flagship initiative.