Southern Africa Migration Management Project (SAMM) – (2021-2024)


This €20 million project aims at improving migration management in Southern and Eastern Africa and the Indian Ocean region. SAMM’s objective is to facilitate legal labour migration and manage mixed migration by protecting the rights of vulnerable groups, including migrant workers, refugees, children and victims of people trafficking. It follows a comprehensive approach that identifies the positive effects of labour migration on regional integration and economic development.

A key priority of SAMM’s is to formulate and operationalise the frameworks for International Labour Migration and Mixed Migration Policy of three regional communities:

  1. the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA),
  2. the Indian Ocean Commission (IOC); and
  3. the Southern Africa Development Community (SADC).

It also provides country-level support to member states in Southern Africa and the Indian Ocean region. The project is implemented by four collaborating UN agencies: ILO, IOM, UNODC and UNHCR.

Some of the key results delivered by the project so far include:

  • Development and validation of regional and national labour migration policies;
  • 1,000 vulnerable migrants have received direct assistance through the assisted voluntary return programme and over 100 protection actors have been capacitated;
  • Development of a Regional Trafficking in Persons Case Digest for Southern Africa;
  • Support to the return of 160 Zimbabwean refugees from Dukwi Refugee Camp located in Botswana;
  • Enhanced availability of cross-border mobility data.