• Both the receiving states and sending states shall strengthen the political, economic and social pillars of the ASEAN Community by promoting the full potential and dignity of migrant workers in a climate of freedom, equity, and stability in accordance with the laws, regulations, and policies of respective ASEAN Member Countries;
  • The receiving states and the sending states shall, for humanitarian reasons, closely cooperate to resolve the cases of migrant workers who, through no fault of their own, have subsequently become undocumented;
  • The receiving states and the sending states shall take into account the fundamental rights and dignity of migrant workers and family members already residing with them without undermining the application by the receiving states of their laws, regulations and policies; and
  • Nothing in the present Declaration shall be interpreted as implying the regularisation of the situation of migrant workers who are undocumented.
    Pursuant to the prevailing laws, regulations and policies of the respective receiving states, the receiving states will:

    1. Intensify efforts to protect the fundamental human rights, promote the welfare and uphold human dignity of migrant workers;
    2. Work towards the achievement of harmony and tolerance between receiving states and migrant workers;
    3. Facilitate access to resources and remedies through information, training and education, access to justice, and social welfare services as appropriate and in accordance with the legislation of the receiving state, provided that they fulfill the requirements under applicable laws, regulations and policies of the said state, bilateral agreements and multilateral treaties;
    4. Promote fair and appropriate employment protection, payment of wages, and adequate access to decent working and living conditions for migrant workers;
    5. Provide migrant workers, who may be victims of discrimination, abuse, exploitation, violence, with adequate access to the legal and judicial system of the receiving states; and
    6. Facilitate the exercise of consular functions to consular or diplomatic authorities of states of origin when a migrant worker is arrested or committed to prison or custody or detained in any other manner, under the laws and regulations of the receiving state and in accordance with the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations.

    Pursuant to the prevailing laws, regulations and policies of the respective sending states, the sending states will:

    1. Enhance measures related to the promotion and protection of the rights of migrant workers;
    2. Ensure access to employment and livelihood opportunities for their citizens as sustainable alternatives to migration of workers;
    3. Set up policies and procedures to facilitate aspects of migration of workers, including recruitment, preparation for deployment overseas and protection of the migrant workers when abroad as well as repatriation and reintegration to the countries of origin; and
    4. Establish and promote legal practices to regulate recruitment of migrant workers and adopt mechanisms to eliminate recruitment malpractices through legal and valid contracts, regulation and accreditation of recruitment agencies and employers, and blacklisting of negligent/unlawful agencies.

    For purposes of protecting and promoting the rights of migrant workers, ASEAN Member Countries in accordance with national laws, regulations and policies, will:

    1. Promote decent, humane, productive, dignified and remunerative employment for migrant workers;
    2. Establish and implement human resource development programmes and reintegration programmes for migrant workers in their countries of origin;
    3. Take concrete measures to prevent or curb the smuggling and trafficking in persons by, among others, introducing stiffer penalties for those who are involved in these activities;
    4. Facilitate data-sharing on matters related to migrant workers, for the purpose of enhancing policies and programmes concerning migrant workers in both sending and receiving states;
    5. Promote capacity building by sharing of information, best practices as well as opportunities and challenges encountered by ASEAN Member Countries in relation to protection and promotion of migrant workers’ rights and welfare;
    6. Extend assistance to migrant workers of ASEAN Member Countries who are caught in conflict or crisis situations outside ASEAN in the event of need and based on the capacities and resources of the Embassies and Consular Offices of the relevant ASEAN Member Countries, based on bilateral consultations and arrangements;
    7. Encourage international organisations, ASEAN dialogue partners and other countries to respect the principles and extend support and assistance to the implementation of the measures contained in this Declaration; and
    8. Task the relevant ASEAN bodies to follow up on the Declaration and to develop an ASEAN instrument on the protection and promotion of the rights of migrant workers, consistent with ASEAN’s vision of a caring and sharing Community, and direct the Secretary-General of ASEAN to submit annually a report on the progress of the implementation of the Declaration to the Summit through the ASEAN Ministerial Meeting.

    DONE at Cebu, Philippines, this Thirteenth Day of January in the Year Two Thousand and Seven, in a single original copy in the English Language.