The Global Compact on Refugees and Opportunities for Syrian refugee self-reliance

Since the eruption of the Syrian crisis in 2011, the number of Syrian refugees in Turkey has steadily increased, reaching more than 3.6 million. At the same time, traditional approaches for supporting refugees are failing. The integration of Syrian refugees into Turkey’s formal economy presents a unique challenge. As advocated in the UN Global Compact on Refugees (GCR), one way to achieve this would be to offer trade concessions to countries hosting large numbers of refugees as an incentive to open their labour market to the formal employment of refugees. An approach focused on economic growth in the Turkish agricultural sector would potentially offer unique benefits, both to the EU and Turkey, and could be endorsed by the EU in the spirit of burden-sharing.

This Policy Dialogue will discuss how continued cooperation between the EU and Turkey can improve the lives and self-reliance of Syrian refugees as well as that of their host communities in Turkey.  The panel discussion will also mark the launch of a joint report by the Brookings Institution and the Tent Partnership for Refugees, on “How the EU can use agricultural trade to promote self-reliance for Syrian refugees in Turkey.



Kemal Kirişci, TÜSİAD Senior Fellow, Center on the United States and Europe, Brookings Institution

Hélène van Melle, Director of European Partnerships, Tent Partnership for Refugees

Myriam Ferran, Director for Strategy and Turkey, DG NEAR, European Commission

Tineke Strik MEP, Group of the Greens/European Free Alliance, European Parliament

Claudio Tomasi, Resident Representative in Turkey, UNDP

Jean-Louis De Brouwer, Director of the European Affairs Programme, Egmont Institute

Elke De Jagher, Senior External Relations Associate, UNHCR

Marie De Somer, Head of Migration and Diversity Programme, European Policy Centre (Moderator)


Feb 03 2020


14:30 - 16:30

Local Time

  • Timezone: America/New_York
  • Date: Feb 03 2020
  • Time: 08:30 - 10:30


European Policy Centre
14-16 rue du Trône, 1000 Brussels, Belgium


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