Support to the African Union on migration and displacement

Project description

Title: Support to the African Union on migration and displacement
Commissoned by: German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ)
Countries: Member States of the African Union
Lead executing agency: African Union
Overall term: 2018 to 2020


While migration in Europe has increasingly come to the fore since the so-called refugee crisis in 2015, this issue has long been a part of life on the African continent. However, the figures contradict the image of a 'migration flood' from Africa to Europe, which often dominates the public debate. Four out of five African migrants remain on the African continent, making it all the more important for migration within Africa to be safe and orderly. This is the only way to prevent irregular migration, which often occurs in difficult and extremely hazardous conditions, and to leverage the potential of regular migration for development. African states are also home to a large proportion of registered displaced persons worldwide. Roughly 80 per cent of refugees from the sub-Saharan region seek refuge in neighbouring African countries. In addition to internationally displaced persons, nearly 12 million people seek protection as internally displaced persons (IDPs) within their country. The African Union (AU) plays a key role in these issues. Its executive body, the African Union Commission (AUC), has been mandated to develop continental regulatory frameworks and standards on migration and displacement and represent the continent as a united entity in regional and global exchange.


The AU effectively fulfils its mandate in the field of migration, mobility and displacement.


The project contributes to enhancing the AU's steering capabilities and improves displacement and migration governance throughout Africa. It starts at the institutional level and strengthens continental governance in the area of migration. In close consultation with the AUC, the project takes account of the experience gained from the existing cooperation with the AU. The project uses tried-and-tested methods of technical cooperation to support the sector strategy with the Migration Policy Framework for Africa (MPFA) and political priorities, for example, the institutional reform of the AU advanced by Paul Kagame to boost efficiency. The project focuses on three key fields of activity:

  • It offers institutional capacity development and coordination to support the AU with implementing the MPFA and its plan of action.
  • It intends to promote upscaling and application of the MPFA on a regional and national level by familiarising Member States and regional economic communities with the migration policy framework. The project provides technical support and process advice for adaptation to regional and national policies.
  • It strengthens the AU's technical capacities regarding its cooperation with diaspora communities, labour migration and protective regime. The continuation of a flexible fund is envisaged, and relevant AUC departments and AU institutions can apply for support.