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2023 Global Refugee Forum - Proposed Concept Note

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Introduction

This concept note sets out the proposed preparations process for the 2023 Global Refugee Forum (GRF) in line with the Roadmap to the GRF, which will be convened in Geneva in the second full week of December 2023 in Geneva (the exact dates and location remain to be confirmed).

The Global Compact on Refugees (GCR) paragraph 7 aimsto: (i) ease the pressures on host countries; (ii) enhance refugee self-reliance; (iii) expand access to third-country solutions; and (iv) support conditions in countries of origin for return in safety and dignity. It further sets out a series of arrangements to facilitate engagement and support for these objectives. Key amongst these arrangements is a Global Refugee Forum (GRF), which is elaborated in the GCR paragraph 17:

A periodic Global Refugee Forum, at ministerial level, will be convened for all United Nations Member States, together with relevant stakeholders, to announce concrete pledges and contributions towards the objectives of the global compact, as set out in para 7, and to consider opportunities, challenges and ways in which burden- and responsibility-sharing can be enhanced. The first Forum will be convened in 2019. Subsequent Forums will be convened every four years, unless otherwise agreed by the General Assembly, in order to ensure sustained momentum and political will. Forums will be co-convened and co-hosted by one or more State(s) and the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, with an invitation to the United Nations Secretary-General to participate. Forums would, in principle, take place in Geneva to facilitate the participation of all States. In the years in which Forums take place, there will be no High Commissioner’s Dialogue on Protection Challenges.

The first GRF was held in 2019, garnering over 1,400 pledges and 350 submissions of good practices linked to the GCR from more than 15 stakeholder groups1 . In 2021, UNHCR released the first GCR Indicator Report and convened a High-Level Officials Meeting to take stock of progress towards the GCR objectives at the mid-point between Forums. Twenty key recommendations and follow-up actions were identified to guide multistakeholder engagement and the development of pledges and contributions for the next GRF.

The 2023 GRF will be anchored in the significant progress made by governments and other stakeholders towards the implementation of pledges and initiatives announced since 2019 and will provide an opportunity to submit new pledges, share good practices to inform and inspire further burden and responsibility-sharing, and take stock of progress, challenges, and opportunities ahead.