Germany is co-convener of the Global Refugee Forum

©UNHCR / Diana Diaz

The first‑ever Global Refugee Forum (GRF) will be held in Geneva (Switzerland) on 17 and 18 December 2019. One year after the affirmation of the Global Compact on Refugees (GCR), the GRF provides a crucial opportunity to implement the goals set out therein. As co‑conveners, Germany, Ethiopia, Pakistan, Costa Rica and Turkey are building momentum together with the UN Refugee Agency UNHCR to strengthen the collective international response to refugee situations.

The goal of the Global Refugee Forum is to generate momentum towards implementing the Global Compact on Refugees and to achieve more equitable burden- and responsibility‑sharing for refugees and host countries.

#RefugeeForum: immediate response & long‑term solutions

Participants of the GRF are invited to act as co‑sponsors for the six thematic areas:

  1. Burden-sharing
  2. Education
  3. Energy & infrastructure
  4. Jobs & income
  5. Shelter & capacity‑building
  6. Sustainable solutions

Each thematic area will be featured in a high‑level dialogue, side events and spotlight sessions during the Forum.

The Global Compact on Refugees (GCR) is a framework for more predictable responsibility‑sharing in refugee situations and it was affirmed in 2018 by the UN General Assembly. The GCR is based on two years of extensive consultations with Member States, international organisations, refugees, civil society and the private sector. The international agreement recognises that a sustainable solution to refugee situations cannot be achieved without international cooperation. However, each Member State is responsible for deciding which measures it considers right to implement, and to what extent. Implementation is based on voluntary contributions and is not legally binding. Germany already does more than required in many areas.


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Germany is co‑convener of the Global Refugee Forum

In its role as co‑convener of the Global Refugee Forum, Germany is mobilising other countries to increase their engagement in refugee situations and in support of host communities. In addition, Germany is co‑sponsoring the thematic group on education, and it is leading the task‑team on tertiary education.

As part of its engagement, Germany is mobilising new supporters for the Albert Einstein German Academic Refugee Initiative (DAFI), UNHCR’s higher education scholarship programme. The DAFI programme has played a central role in enabling refugees worldwide to access higher education. The programme has grown considerably since its inception in 1992, having supported more than 15,500 students to attend universities and colleges in over 50 countries of asylum.

Germany – host country and important supporter of UNHCR

Germany is home to the fifth‑largest refugee population globally and is the second‑largest donor to UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency. This engagement in supporting and protecting refugees and their host communities is widely recognised and welcomed.

Key Facts

  • 1st Global Refugee Forum:
    17/18 December 2019 in Geneva (Switzerland)
  • Germany is, together with Ethiopia, Pakistan, Costa Rica and Turkey, co‑convener of the Global Refugee Forum. UNHCR and Switzerland are co‑hosting the Forum.
  • Envisaged outcome: concrete pledges and contributions that will advance the objectives of the Global Compact on Refugees (GCR).
  • The Global Refugee Forum will be held every four years to take stock and work towards implementing the Global Compact on Refugees.
  • Every two years, senior officials from Member States will reconvene and track progress.
  • On an annual basis, the UN High Commissioner for Refugees will present progress reports to the General Assembly.

Further Information:

German Government
(in German)

Federal Foreign Office
Twitter: @GermanyDiplo #RefugeeCompact #RefugeeForum

UNHCR (in German)
Twitter: @refugees #RefugeeCompact #GCR #RefugeeForum

Last updated: 23.01.2020 Published: 16.12.2019