About the Bali Process

Since its inception in 2002, the Bali Process on People Smuggling, Trafficking in Persons and Related Transnational Crime (Bali Process) has effectively raised regional awareness of the consequences of people smuggling, trafficking in persons and related transnational crime, and developed and implemented strategies and practical cooperation in response.  More than  45 members, including the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), the International Organization for Migration (IOM) and the United Nations Office of Drugs and Crime (UNODC), as well as a number of observer countries and international agencies participate in this voluntary forum.

The core objectives of the Bali Process are:


·  the development of more effective information and intelligence sharing;
·  improved cooperation among regional law enforcement agencies to deter and combat people smuggling and trafficking networks;
·  enhanced cooperation on border and visa systems to detect and prevent illegal movements;
·  increased public awareness in order to discourage these activities and warn those susceptible;
·  enhanced effectiveness of return as a strategy to deter people smuggling and trafficking through conclusion of appropriate arrangements;
·  cooperation in verifying the identity and nationality of illegal migrants and trafficking victims;
·  the enactment of national legislation to criminalise people smuggling and trafficking in persons;
·  provision of appropriate protection and assistance to the victims of trafficking, particularly women and children;
·  enhanced focus on tackling the root causes of illegal migration, including by increasing opportunities for legal migration between states;
·  assisting countries to adopt best practices in asylum management, in accordance with the principles of the Refugees Convention; and
·  advancing the implementation of an inclusive non-binding regional cooperation framework under which interested parties can cooperate more effectively to reduce irregular movement through the region. 

The Bali Process Ad Hoc Group

The Ad Hoc Group was established to develop and pursue practical measures to inform future regional cooperation on people smuggling, trafficking in persons and the irregular movement of people.  The Ad Hoc Group brings together most-affected countries and relevant international organisations to address specific issues related to irregular migration in the region. The Ad Hoc Group is primarily tasked with implementing the Bali Process Regional Cooperation Framework.

Regional Cooperation Framework

On 30 March 2011, Bali Process Ministers, in consultation with the UNHCR and IOM, agreed to establish a Regional Cooperation Framework (RCF) to enable interested Bali Process members to establish practical arrangements aimed at enhancing the region’s response to irregular movement through consistent processing of asylum claims, durable solutions for refugees, the sustainable return of those not owed protection and targeting of people smuggling enterprises.

The Regional Support Office was subsequently established to facilitate implementation of the RCF. The Office provides a central point for information sharing between States on refugee protection and international migration; capacity building and exchange of best practices; pooling of common technical resources; and providing logistical, administrative, operational and coordination support for joint projects between Bali Process members. The Regional Support Office was officially opened in Bangkok on 10 September 2012.

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