Participant's Policy Recommendations

The AU15 participants collectively worked towards the development of recommendations on the following sub-topics related to migration and multicultural societies:
  • Media and Diversity
  • Education
  • Economic Impact
  • Intercultural Dialogue
  • Political Participation
  • Health
Media and Diversity
Implementing the following policies will lead to mutual understanding between immigrants and host country nationals, a reduction of conventional stereotypes of migrants, better integration and more support for a multicultural society. We encourage ASEM stakeholders to keep talking.

Set up a Media Diversity College: the college will provide diversity training as well as scholarships to journalists on talking about sensitive topics related to migration and multiculturalism.

Create an ASEM media diversity board: each country should have a national media diversity board that can be part of the bureau of media and communications or an independent ASEM auxiliary. Each year, representatives from these national boards can meet to discuss initiatives and ideas on media diversity as well as review existing policies in their countries.

In addition, these media diversity organisations may promote the participation of journalists in their countries by establishing Journalists’ Media Diversity Associations in their respective nations, which will encourage long-term cooperation among journalists in the country on the issue of encouraging practices that promote diversity.

We recommend that civil society should be involved in the establishment of an ASEM media diversity board for example by setting up a competition for youths to design slogans, logos and ideas for the board.
Economic Impact
We encourage that ASEM member states to:
  • promote equal treatment without regard to background;
  • allow larger occupational mobility within the country - the visas and working permits should allow the worker to change company and branch of work;
  • implement an exchange of best practices of member states with regard to government control on the exploitation of migrant workers, particularly of irregular migrants;
  • prevent long-term irregular situations by creating programmes of inclusion introducing opportunities on how to regularise the situation of undocumented migrants;
  • create incentives, such as tax breaks, for employers to encourage migrant employees to attend training and skills courses;
  • further develop information offices which are co-organised by the receiving- and sending countries situated in main sending countries about the working- and living conditions of the receiving country;
  • establish cooperation programmes between the sending and receiving countries on a bilateral level.
Political Participation
ASEM member states are encouraged to (re-)consider granting regular migrants the right to vote at the local level after a minimum period of stay in the country or after having obtained permanent residency, whichever comes first.

ASEM member states are encouraged to consider migrant communities as a legitimate part of civil society and to initiate regular dialogues with them regarding decision-making processes.

ASEM member states should promote the formation of migrant associations and the increased participation of migrants therein. Examples of these include providing sufficient public meeting spaces, free legal assistance, opportunities to form networks between migrants of different nationalities, and other similar activities.

ASEM member states should provide the opportunity for naturalization to regular migrants that reside in the country for an extended period of time, ASEM states are encouraged to work towards finding policies which address the problem of statelessness.

Education
We stress the importance of implementing the right of education for every child by all ASEM member states. States are encouraged to place a focus on multiculturalism in public education through ensuring diverse student and faculty bodies, investing in exchange programmes, encouraging a flexible minimum quota system for international students at university level and empowering migrants through the education of the national language(s).

We encourage ASEM member states to promote multiculturalism through the educational curriculum. This can be achieved by providing foreign language electives, creating and exchanging good pedagogical practices such as teacher training on inter-cultural issues and competences, including education on Asian and European cultures at primary school level and providing the option for qualified students to attend sponsored exchange programmes beginning at secondary school level.

We encourage that ASEM member states further stimulate the organisation of extra-curricular activities such as multicultural events at schools and inter-cultural summer schools.

Prevent the negative effects of the "brain drain" by establishing scholarship-work and scholarship-apprenticeship links. Create exchange programmes between high skilled workers in different fields of work from ASEM member states.

Create exchange programmes between high skilled workers in different fields of work from ASEM member states.

Intercultural Dialogue At the international level We encourage ASEM member states to:
  • exchange examples of good practices on intercultural dialogue within their respective countries in the areas of culture, health, education, workplace, etc.;
  • involve migrants and migrant associations in as many ASEM meetings as possible, i.e. as observers with the view of increasing visibility on migration-related issues at the international level;
  • include migrant-related activities on the side-lines of major ASEM ministerial meetings. These could take the form of public lectures, seminars, expositions, etc.
Consider the possibilities to extend spaces for intercultural dialogue to other continents. We believe that migration does not limit itself to Asia and Europe and discussions on comprehensive migration policies should include representatives from as many countries of destination, transit and origin as possible.
Intercultural Dialogue
At the international level
We encourage ASEM member states to:
  • exchange examples of good practices on intercultural dialogue within their respective countries in the areas of culture, health, education, workplace, etc.;
  • involve migrants and migrant associations in as many ASEM meetings as possible, i.e. as observers with the view of increasing visibility on migration-related issues at the international level;
  • include migrant-related activities on the side-lines of major ASEM ministerial meetings. These could take the form of public lectures, seminars, expositions, etc.
Consider the possibilities to extend spaces for intercultural dialogue to other continents. We believe that migration does not limit itself to Asia and Europe and discussions on comprehensive migration policies should include representatives from as many countries of destination, transit and origin as possible.
Health
We encourage ASEM member states to:
  • create and implement programmes at national level to improve cultural awareness among the health care professionals in order to meet the challenges posed by every nation-specific context in this field;
  • build exchange networks between ASEM countries to promote and exchange best practices of health care professionals (e.g. peer to peer exchange and information exchange) with the objective of creating peer support networks;
  • ensure common standards of health and sanitation facilities in the residences provided for migrants by the government or the employer, such as labour migrants residences, reception centres etc.;
  • integrate translators/interpreters into health care structures to promote multilingualism and to pursue equal quality of health care.