Press Release: Presentation of the Road Map for Togolese Abroad

The Minister of Foreign Affairs, African Integration and Togolese Abroad, HE Prof. On April 1, 2019, Robert DUSSEY presented the “Government Roadmap for Togolese Abroad”. The roadmap of the Government for Togolese Abroad meets the vision of the President of the Republic, HE Mr. Faure Essozimna GNASSINGBE, that of ensuring a better organization of the Togolese diaspora for its more appropriate involvement in the efforts national development. Its mission is to create the conditions for a more inclusive involvement of the Togolese Diaspora in the work of national construction.

In keeping with this vision, the government’s actions in favor of the Togolese diaspora revolve around three (03) major axes, namely:

valuing the human, economic and social capital of the diaspora;
strengthening communication between the Government and the diaspora;
Improving the protection and defense of the interests of Togolese abroad.
The execution of these strategic axes is planned in two main components: Priority Actions Program (PAP) and Medium and Long Term Program (LTPP).

The Priority Actions Program refers to two main axes, namely: enhancing the human, economic and social capital of the diaspora and strengthening communication between the Government and the diaspora.

In implementing the first strategic axis dedicated to enhancing the human, economic and social capital of the diaspora, the government intends to achieve the following three objectives:

mobilize the investments, skills and know-how of Togolese abroad;
implement the program of co-implementation of local development projects in the regions of origin of migrants;
develop a solidarity volunteer project for development.
With regard to the implementation of the second strategic axis dedicated to strengthening communication between the Government and the diaspora, the Government will pursue the following three objectives:

create structures that can mobilize and support the return of the Togolese diaspora. These include working to set up the High Council of Togolese from outside;
to map the Togolese diaspora and its distribution in the world;
organize an economic forum of Togolese from outside.
Under the strategic axis 3 on the improvement of the defense and the protection of the interests of Togolese living abroad, included in the actions of the Medium and Long Term Program (LTA), the Government will put the focus on the negotiation of bilateral agreements with countries in which strong Togolese communities reside and those offering attractive employment opportunities in order to better supervise Togolese labor migration in accordance with international labor standards. The Government will also work to establish a Migration and Diaspora Observatory and to facilitate the consular and administrative procedures of members of its diaspora in the countries of residence.

It should be noted that several projects in favor of the diaspora are included in this roadmap.

Moreover, it must be remembered that the Government has already had to carry out several actions for the Togolese diaspora. Among these, the establishment of the Togolese leadership from outside by decree in 2005, among others, can be considered; the creation in the same year of the High Commissioner for Returnees and Humanitarian Action (HCRAH); the development and implementation of the Diaspora program including the use of diaspora skills (2010-2014); the creation in 2014 of the interministerial committee for the coordination and monitoring of migration and development activities; the establishment of a diaspora unit to accompany Togolese from abroad who carry projects in their implementation; the designation since 2015 of focal points responsible for the diaspora in the diplomatic and consular missions of Togo; touring encounters with the diaspora in 2013 and 2014; the organization of the major events of the diaspora in 2014; the visa exemption for Togolese foreigners with dual nationality (2014); the organization of the first edition of the “Successful Diaspora” week (2016).

On another note, the Government attaches great importance to the Togolese diaspora in the perspective of the contribution of all Togolese and Togolese women to the national construction, in this case for the implementation of the National Development Plan (PND).

Also, the Government intends to organize from May 2019 actions to raise awareness of Togolese abroad on this new vision including the Economic Forum Togolese Abroad scheduled for 28 and 29 November 2019.

Done at Lomé on 1 April 2019

Speech by Minister Robert Dussey at the launch of the roadmap for the togolese abroad

INTRODUCTIVE WORD OF PROF. ROBERT DUSSEY, MINISTER OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS, AFRICAN INTEGRATION AND TOGOLESE ABROAD ON THE OCCASION OF THE LAUNCH OF THE ROADMAP OF THE TOGOLESE ABROAD

Excellency Ladies and Gentlemen Ambassadors,

Ladies and Gentlemen, Representatives of International Organizations and Organizations of Civil Society,

Mr. Secretary General,

Mr. Director of Cabinet,

Ladies and Gentlemen Directors,

Ladies and Gentlemen Division Chiefs,

Dear friends of the press,

Ladies and gentlemen,

It is with a real pleasure that I address you on this day of launching the roadmap that the Head of State, HE Mr. Faure ESSOZIMNA GNASSINGBE, has kindly entrusted to us in the context of strengthening the fiber patriotic that binds Togo to its diaspora.

By deciding to change the name of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, adding: Togolese Abroad,

the President of the Republic wanted to show the importance and the role of the diaspora in the development of Togo.

There is no nation, teach us Ernest RENAN and today Jean BAECHLER, without a sense of community of destiny, without a national conscience.

Fate among the Stoics is absolute, so Stoicism has a deterministic conception of the cosmos. Destiny is the causal chain of events. Cicero writes in his treatise on divination: “I call fate (fotum) what men call the heimarmene, that is, the order and the series of causes, when a cause linked to another by itself produces an effect (…) we understand that fate is not what superstition means but what science says, namely the eternal cause of things, under which past facts have arrived, the presents arrive and the futures must arrive “.

The universality of destiny does not exclude human action. He integrates it into his consolidations.

The Togolese nation is a community of citizens and the Togolese community of the diaspora is a significant part of our social contract and forms the community of destiny. The number of Togolese living abroad is estimated today at more than two million people and the strongest Togolese communities are reported in neighboring countries (Benin, Ghana, Burkina Faso), Nigeria, Gabon, Chad , in Niger, Equatorial Guinea, Europe (France, Germany, Belgium, etc.) and in certain countries of the American continent (Canada, United States, etc.).

The roadmap to be presented at this ceremony by the Director of Togolese Abroad makes the protection and defense of the interests of Togolese abroad a national priority. Compatriots, because one of the basic needs of every human being is the need for security, wherever they are in the world, must feel safe and protected. Our compatriots in the diaspora have the right to expect more protection from the motherland.

The implementation of the roadmap will enable our country to make the diaspora, a strategic partner of the National Development Plan (NDP), including through the promotion of skills and activities transfers, the strengthening of relations between national actors and Togolese expatriates, and the mobilization of resources.

The Government’s new policy towards foreign compatriots is based on a deep conviction: our national construction project is a forward-looking project that needs the support of all. The diaspora is already playing a role, but it can still do better.

I remind you, for the record, that the Togolese money transfers from the outside to the homeland have continued to grow exponentially since 2010 to reach nearly 423 million US dollars in the year 2017. represents, on average, about 10% of our country’s gross domestic product (GDP).

The Government is working to create the conditions for greater involvement of the diaspora in the work of national construction. This is the place to recall the actions that the Government has already had to carry out in favor of the diaspora. I can mention, among other things, the creation of the Togolese Direction of the outside by decree in 2005; the development and implementation of the Diaspora program, including the use of diaspora skills and the carrying out of studies (2010-2014); the creation in 2014 of an interministerial committee to coordinate and monitor migration and development activities; setting up a diaspora cell to accompany the Togolese from outside with projects; the designation since 2015 of focal points responsible for the diaspora in the diplomatic and consular missions of Togo; the diaspora meetings in 2013 and 2014, which will be renewed

this year ; the organization of the major national meetings by geographical area of ​​the diaspora in 2014; the visa exemption for Togolese foreigners with dual nationality in 2014 and the organization of the first edition of the “Successful Diaspora Week” in 2016.

Moreover, the Government is working to strengthen the positive freedom of Togolese in the diaspora wherever they are, wherever they work. The freedom of the citizen, as Amartya SEN teaches us (Indian, Nobel Prize of economy in 1998 and philosopher), is a social and political responsibility. The President of the Republic and the Togolese Government are well aware of this fundamental truth.

On 28 and 29 November 2019, the Government will organize the first Togolese Foreign Economic Forum, which will provide an appropriate framework for the Government and the diaspora members carrying out projects to explore the financing capacities of Togolese abroad and to mobilize them for the implementation of the PND.

Living the Togolese diaspora,

Long live Togo,

Thank you.