The Bali Process

The Bali Process is a regional, multilateral process designed to boost bilateral and regional cooperative efforts against people smuggling and trafficking in persons through technical workshops and increased cooperation between the 45 member countries and 4 member organisations: the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR); the International Organization for Migration (IOM); the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC); and the International Labour Organization (ILO). Overall direction and coordination of the Bali Process is provided through an officials' level Steering Group comprising Indonesia and Australia as the two co-chairs, New Zealand, Thailand, UNHCR and IOM.

The Bali Process achieves both high-level political dialogue, including regular Ministerial conferences and practical capacity-building activities at officials level. DFAT works within a Whole-of-Government context, with the Department of Home Affairs and others in leading different Bali Process working groups. Ambassador for People Smuggling and Human Trafficking, Dr Geoffrey Shaw, is Australia's senior official co-chair.

The Seventh Bali Process Ministerial Conference in August 2018 achieved significant outcomes in addressing people smuggling, human trafficking and irregular migration in the region. Members agreed to the 2018 Bali Declaration, which reaffirmed the inaugural 2016 declaration, and commits members to enhanced cooperation on addressing human trafficking, improving information and policy sharing, promoting regular migration pathways, and countering criminal networks. The 2018 Bali Declaration also called for greater collaboration with civil society. Members expressed concern about the displacement and irregular movement of people, which is a complex challenge, especially in the Indo-Pacific region.  

The Government and Business Forum (GABF) brings together Bali Process ministers and senior private sector leaders from the region to discuss and consider ways to eradicate trafficking and slavery. The second meeting of the GABF was held during the August 2018 Ministerial Conference. A key outcome was the endorsement of the 'AAA' Recommendations by government leaders. The 'AAA' Recommendations set out a pathway for government and business to jointly contribute to the eradication of human trafficking and modern slavery in supply chains. The recommendations were developed by business representatives from member states in the GABF, led by business co-chairs Andrew Forrest, chairman of Fortescue Metals Group and founder of Walk Free Foundation, and Eddy Sariaatmadja, founder of media group Emtek.

The 'AAA' Recommendations have three pillars:

  • Acknowledge – increasing business and government understanding of the scale of these challenges, and engendering 'buy-in' to address them;
  • Act – encouraging practical action by business and governments in support of ethical business practices, transparency across supply chains, and assistance for victims;
  • Advance – developing a governance framework to ensure sustainability and effectiveness of the GABF.

Further information can be found on the Bali Process website. Further information on the Government and Business Forum can be found at The Business Hub.

Last Updated: 6 December 2018