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Migration: validating skills of returning migrants

Year/Date: 17/11/2011

Participants at the conference in Chisinau

More than 60 participants from nine countries attended the conference "Skills validation for returning migrants under the mobility partnership" in Chisinau, Republic of Moldova, on 10 and 11 November.

In the context of the Eastern Partnership’s cooperation on the EU's Stockholm Programme and the Mobility Partnerships, the conference was an occasion to analyse the Moldovan experience in the implementation of the Mobility Partnership and to disseminate the lessons learnt to Georgia and Armenia, the countries that concluded such partnerships more recently.

The representatives from the Republic of Moldova, Armenia, Georgia and Ukraine have common challenges in their labour markets. They agreed to strengthen mutual cooperation and common actions in the field of migration and skills.

The experience of the Republic of Moldova has been enriched with analysis of labour migration and a particular focus of the policies and actions to attract Moldovan migrants to return. The conference stressed the importance of offering a system for validation of non-formal and informal learning (VNFIL) in order to recognise the acquired skills.

There are important sectors like construction, where investments, in particular foreign investments, are based on the skills of the workers as a pre-requisite for certification and for participating in tenders. Speakers presented actions that aim to attract migrants to return and set up their own business.

The participating countries agreed to continue to exchange experience on:

  • how to set up a solid system of skills development and validation of learning processes (share occupational standards templates),
  • involvement of social partners (creation of partnership, nationally agreed structure, institutionalisation of sector committees),
  • what should be role of different stakeholders, and also
  • how to assure quality (who should define quality criteria for validation).

Since 2009, the ETF has collaborated with the authorities of the Republic of Moldova in developing a system that contributes to the transparency of adult workers’ skills through quality-assured assessment and validation against national occupational standards.

The ETF project is part of the labour market component of the EU-Republic of Moldova Mobility Partnership, and it is focussed on recognising the skills of returning migrants to value them in the domestic labour market.

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