OSCE discusses harmonizing migration data in Russia and Central Asia
MOSCOW, 25 March 2013 – An OSCE-led seminar on improving the collection, usage and exchange of comparable data on migration in Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, the Russian Federation and Tajikistan started today in Moscow.
The two-day event is co-organized by the OSCE Office of the Co-ordinator of OSCE Economic and Environmental Activities (OCEEA), the International Organization for Migration (IOM) and the Moscow-based Higher School of Economics.
Forty participants, including government officials from the Russian Federation and the three participating Central Asian countries, representatives of the CIS Interstate Statistical Committee, Russian academic circles as well as international experts, discussed international standards, regional and national aspects of migration data collection, ways to further improve migration statistics in the Russian Federation, and the steps needed to harmonize and exchange migration data between Russia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan.
Alexey Stukalo, the OSCE’s Deputy Co-odinator for Economic Activities, said at the opening: “Reliable and comparable migration data is crucial for developing efficient migration policies in the OSCE participating States and for strengthening co-operation between them on migration issues.” He added that this data should include statistics on the arrival and departure of migrants, the number of those staying in a country, the composition of the migrant population, and their social and demographic characteristics.
Elena Radochina, the Deputy Head of the Federal Migration Service (FMS) of the Russian Federation stressed that “the FMS pays a particular attention to the use of information technologies which help to analyse the migration situation; develop systems of statistical observation of migrants; and improve mechanisms of collection, storage, processing and dissemination of information in the area of migration.”
This seminar is part of an OSCE-IOM project supporting the establishment of a harmonized migration data collection process in the countries of the Eurasian Economic Community region. Following this seminar and similar meetings already held in Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan, a template for the harmonized collection and sharing of migration data in the region will be prepared as well as a handbook, compiling recommendations by experts.