The Migration Strategy of Georgia states that for effective management of migration processes and decision-making procedures, it is important to collect and efficiently analyse data on outward and inward migration. One of the main challenges of migration management in Georgia has been the lack of a common system for migration data analysis. This affects migration data exchange and sharing, comprehensive analysis, and keeping migration statistics up to date, which, in turn, has an impact on the Georgia’s implementation of migration policy based on credible and properly analysed data.
Georgia has committed itself to the establishment of a mechanism for the monitoring of migration stocks and flows, enabling regular updating of Georgia’s Migration Profile through a unified electronic system containing data on both irregular and legal migration, and asylum seekers/refugees. The migration-related databases in operation in Georgia had previously been located in different ministries and institutions which were not always interlinked and/or coordinated. The Unified Migration Analytical System (UMAS) has therefore been established to ensure collection and analysis of data within the competences of different Georgian state institutions.
Within the EU-funded “Enhancing Georgia’s Migration Management” (ENIGMMA) project, ICMPD actively supported the development of the UMAS through capacity building activities and expert support. In the process of establishing the UMAS, line ministries involved in migration management identified new challenges related to data collection and data quality within their institutions. Despite resources already being allocated and tangible progress being achieved in this direction, the process is a complex, long-term one and further expertise and technical assistance is required to continue developing both the necessary ICT infrastructure and the respective human resources. The “Sustaining Migration Management in Georgia” (ENIGMMA 2) project therefore continues to support the Public Service Development Agency (PSDA) in further development of the UMAS via expert and capacity building support.
The legal basis for the exchange of data within the UMAS has also been further enhanced. For this purpose the PSDA signed Memoranda of Understanding with various state agencies involved in migration-related activities. The transfer of migration-related data from most of the agencies was executed successfully. Initial analytical reports have been generated by the system and are being analysed by the UMAS team to further enhance the system’s performance. From a technical point of view, the UMAS has undergone several system upgrades which have improved its performance.