Launch of e-learning course on entrepreneurship for migrants and refugees (French version)

23 June 2021
15:00 - 16:30 hrs. Online (CET)


Entrepreneurship offers both a long-term solution to the challenges emanating from large and permanent movements of people and operates as a means for livelihoods in the short-term following humanitarian crises. Especially in recovering from COVID-19 pandemic, forging innovative partnerships can play a critical role in improving the inclusive nature of entrepreneurship ecosystems. Such partnerships can (i) narrow pervasive information gaps on the supply of services by ecosystem stakeholders and the demand for services by migrant and refugee entrepreneurs, (ii) harness synergies among stakeholders, (iii) reduce the barriers faced by migrant and refugee entrepreneurs and (iv) strengthen implementation of policies and delivery of programmes in a coordinated manner. Within this framework, there is a need to build innovative and multistakeholder partnerships to eliminate exclusion and to strengthen the humanitarian-development nexus.


Under the framework of observing the World Refugee Day (20 June) and celebrating International Day of Family Remittances (16 June) and  the Micro-, Small and Medium-sized Enterprise Day (27 June), this virtual session aims to promote a better understanding of the importance of facilitating entrepreneurship for migrants and refugees, particularly in Western, Central and North Africa by optimizing regulatory frameworks and enhancing access to requisite services in the areas of skills training, finance, markets, networks and technology. The session also aims to highlight the positive contributions that migrant and refugee entrepreneurs bring to host communities and the instrumental role of entrepreneurship in preparing for durable solutions. Under the framework of this event, the French version of the e-learning course on “Entrepreneurship for Migrants and Refugees” will also be launched.


The virtual session will be conducted as a Davos-style panel discussion, facilitated by a moderator and involving a group of panelists, with a time dedicated for discussion with the audience. It will commence with UNCTAD, IOM and UNHCR discussing their best practices and lessons learned in operationalizing the Policy Guide on Entrepreneurship for Migrants and Refugees which they jointly published in 2018. This will be followed by a panel session where policymakers and migrant and refugee entrepreneurs will share examples from their experiences. The Policy Guide on Migrant and Refugee Entrepreneurship has been adapted to an e-learning course in 2019 together with UNITAR. The second part of the event will be dedicated to this digital policy tool. UNITAR will provide relevant information about the course which trained and certified over 750 participants in 2020.  The e-course is available in Arabic, English and Spanish, with French as the latest upcoming edition to be launched during the event.

Key Themes

The key themes to be discussed include:

  • the benefits of innovative and multi-sectoral partnerships in promoting entrepreneurship for migrants and refugees;
  • the challenges faced by migrant and refugee entrepreneurs particularly during COVID-19 pandemic;
  • examples on the policy options and successful partnerships emanating from good practices across the world;
  • background, features, and launch of the French version of the e-learning course on Entrepreneurship for Migrants and Refugees


Event Agenda

Moderator: Ms. Chantal Line Carpentier, Chief, UNCTAD New York Office of the Secretary-General

1. Importance of Entrepreneurship for Migrants and Refugees, Inclusive Policies and Innovative Partnerships for Sustainable Development 

First panel:

  • Mr. Richard Bolwijn, Head of Enterprise Branch, UNCTAD,
  • Dr Mamadou Dian Balde, Deputy Director, Division of Resilience and Solutions, UNHCR
  • Ms. Aissata Kane, Senior Regional Advisor, Sub-Saharan Africa, IOM

Questions & Answers

Second Panel:

  • Mr. Olivier Lacroix (France, GFMD);
  • Ms. Emilie Ballestraz, Global Programme Migration and Development, Federal Department of Foreign Affairs, Switzerland
  • Mr. Adel Karoui, President, Albideya, Tunisian Diaspora Association and migrant entrepreneur
  • Mr. Saleh Djibril, Refugee entrepreneur from Amboko camp in Southern Chad

Question and Answers

2. Launch of the French Version of the E-Learning Course on Entrepreneurship for Migrants and Refugees

  • Mr. Alex Meija, Director, Division for People and Social Inclusion, UNITAR
  • H.E. Georges Nakseu-Nguefang, Permanent Representative, OIF

3. Questions and Answers

L'entrepreneuriat pour les migrants et les refugies
23 Jun 2021

Sponsor / funding:
UN Development Account

English  |   Français  |    



Enterprise development Enterprise development





M. Selahattin Selsah Pasali
Division des investissements et des entreprises

Mme Deepali Fernandes
Département de la gestion des migrations

Mme Nada Omeira
Division de la résilience et des solutions

Mme. Marta Erroz
Division des personnes et de l'inclusion sociale