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Canada builds on pledges and partnerships at the Global Refugee Forum

Canada builds on pledges and partnerships at the Global Refugee Forum

News release

December 15, 2023—Geneva, Switzerland—Across the globe, more than 114 million people have been forcibly displaced from their homes, and one third of them are refugees. In response to this vast humanitarian need, Canada shares a responsibility to step up and take action. We continue to be a leading example in offering protection to the most vulnerable populations, supporting the countries that host them, and creating opportunities beyond resettlement through skills-based pathways.

This week, the Honourable Marc Miller, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship, led Canada’s delegation to the Global Refugee Forum in Geneva. Building on previous commitments, he presented and endorsed a number of pledges that advance solutions to the global refugee crisis.


Building on Canada’s recent work to welcome over 40,000 vulnerable Afghans, which has been achieved and exceeded, the Minister announced $21 million for the International Organization for Migration (IOM) to support vulnerable Afghan populations in Central Asia and Pakistan who are fleeing Afghanistan. This funding will help these neighbouring countries become better equipped to support them and respond to their needs.

Minister Miller highlighted how Canada plans to resettle over 136,000 refugees in the next 3 years. Canada will continue to offer protection to the world’s most vulnerable, including women in precarious situations, ethnic and religious minorities, members of LGBTQI+ communities, Rohingya refugees and human rights defenders.

Canada also pledged to continue using complementary pathways to help more refugees and other displaced people find safety. This includes a commitment to make the Economic Mobility Pathways Pilot, a refugee labour mobility pathway, a permanent economic immigration program. Canada will also explore an education pathway for eligible refugee and displaced students to study in Canada, as we continue to champion the growth of complementary pathways worldwide.

In addition, Canada co-sponsored the Securing Sustainable Futures mega-pledge, to help all refugee children receive a quality education, including access to well-supported national education systems. This co-sponsorship demonstrates Canada’s commitment to continue working with global partners to champion education for refugees and local community members in host countries, as well as amplify the voices of refugees.

Canada recognizes that climate change is increasingly compelling people to move within and across borders. This is why the Government of Canada announced funding for the IOM to support the efforts of Mexico in addressing the connections between migration, disasters, climate change and environmental degradation. The IOM will assist Mexico in developing an innovative methodology to collect data on migration, environment and climate change that will then be used to inform potential policy actions by local and state governments.

Canada’s pledges to the Global Refugee Forum reflect our continued leadership in providing humanitarian assistance that addresses pressing needs globally, including food and nutrition assistance, in new and ongoing crises. These pledges also reflect Canada’s focus on longer-term development assistance and advocacy, including for displaced people and host communities such as Venezuela and the surrounding region, Afghanistan and Pakistan, and Rohingya refugees in Bangladesh.


Canada will continue to build on the international partnerships, pledges and momentum gained from the Global Refugee Forum to advance better solutions for refugees, and more help for communities and countries that receive and host them.


“With over 114 million people displaced globally, we have a responsibility to step up and take action to address the global migration crisis. The Forum has been an opportunity to connect with other government leaders, refugees, international business leaders, non-governmental organizations and international organizations, all driven by a deep sense of individual and collective responsibility and commitment to do more. Canada will continue to do our part by making meaningful, life-saving pledges that give more opportunity and hope to refugees and displaced people around the world.”

– The Honourable Marc Miller, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship


“I was born as a Tibetan stateless refugee in India. I am honoured to have served as a refugee advisor to the Canadian delegation at the 2023 Global Refugee Forum. I am proud that Canada continues to be a world leader in supporting the meaningful participation of refugees in global decision-making processes. Recognition of the expertise of refugees is vital in strengthening refugee responses at all levels. Refugees are resourceful partners. I hope that commitments made at the 2023 Global Refugee Forum lead to more equitable, expedited responses for refugees.”

– Tsering Thonsur, Advisor, Refugee Advisory Network of Canada

Quick facts

  • The Global Refugee Forum is the world’s largest international gathering on refugees and is held every 4 years. It provides an opportunity for governments and stakeholders to make concrete pledges and contributions, highlight progress made, share best practices and take stock of the challenges and opportunities ahead.

  • The Government of Canada’s delegation includes a strong representation of Canadian civil society, with nearly a third of its members representing non‑governmental and refugee-led organizations. The delegation for this forum also included dedicated refugee advisors from the Refugee Advisory Network of Canada, the Together for Learning Refugee Education Council, and several refugee protection experts with lived experience of forced displacement.

  • In line with Canada’s whole-of-society approach to refugee responses, Canada’s pledge package for this year’s Global Refugee Forum was developed in consultation with like-minded governments and civil society partners, including domestic and international non-governmental organizations, academics, refugee advocates and refugee-led organizations.

  • In 2022, Canada resettled over 46,500 refugees from 80 countries. This was the fourth straight year that Canada was the top receiving country of refugees.

  • Canada has also resettled over 40,000 Afghan refugees, as part of one of the largest Afghan resettlement programs in the world.

  • The Government of Canada, along with its partners, provides vital pre-arrival and post-arrival support and services to help refugees prepare for and successfully integrate into, their new communities in Canada. Canada is providing $14 million to support the IOM in continuing to deliver its pre-arrival services for refugees, such as transportation and accommodation grants, interpretation, travel costs, meals and childminding, through the Canadian Orientation Abroad Program.

  • When refugees arrive in Canada, they are welcomed as permanent residents and given the supports they need to thrive in their new community, including financial and settlement supports for one year.

  • Canada continues to allocate funds to humanitarian partners in response to pressing needs in new and ongoing refugee contexts. Canada’s gender-responsive and principled humanitarian assistance responds to the life-saving needs of those affected by crises, including refugees.

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Associated links


Bahoz Dara Aziz
Press Secretary
Minister’s Office
Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada

Media Relations
Communications Sector
Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada


Link:, dated December 15, 2023 5:06 pm

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