Migration for Development in the Western Balkans (MIDWEB)

This regional project took into account and built on other initiatives carried out by EC, IOM and other stakeholders, to inform potential migrants from the Western Balkans about legal migration opportunities in the EU labour market and on the other hand, to facilitate the return and successful reintegration of skilled migrants to their countries of origin. This project, implemented by IOM and its consortium partners MARRI, German Federal Office for Migration and Refugees, Vienna Institute for International Economic Studies, and respective Western Balkan Governments, was financially supported with EUR 2 million by the European Union under the IPA Multi-beneficiary Programme for 2009, German government and IOM Development Fund. From February 2011 to November 2012, this project had a twofold aim:

One was to expand, strengthen and increase the capacity of the existing network of Migrant Service Centres in the Western Balkans (WB) in order to ensure efficient dissemination of information about legal channels for migration among potential labour and study migrants (www.migrantservicecentres.org) and the second to provide opportunities for return of skills and human capital and their contribution to the development of the WB to the mutual benefit of migrants and places of origin (www.tvrmidweb.org).

 Specifically, on both regional and national level, the project achieved the aforesaid through the expanded MSC network, embedded in the National Employment Service and expanded to 7 cities throughout Serbia, as a part of the 2012-2020 National Employment Strategy and 20-12 Employment Action Plan, providing comprehensive and tailored pre-departure orientation information to potential migrants but also re-integration and adjustment courses to returning migrants.

Moreover, the project has developed and together with the partners implemented measures to facilitate the return of skilled labour force from Diaspora, temporarily integrating then into their home society, and supporting the transfer of knowledge and dissemination of new acquired skills. Out of 61 temporary returns in the WB, 15 physical and 2 virtual have been implemented in Serbia, based on the needs expressed by the Serbian host institutions.

Further on, the project has supported the WB consular and other relevant officials in their capacity/role in identifying temporary employment/study internship opportunities in destination countries (EU), and promoting the labour potential and skills of WB nationals by means of a Labour Migration Training developed and carried out by IOM experts.

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