UNHCR supports the Government of Iran in implementing a diverse portfolio of livelihoods interventions, including technical and vocational training for refugees, access to loans, and equipment and tools to facilitate establishment or expansion of refugee-run businesses.

Improving refugees’ livelihoods through economic inclusion is key in achieving protection and durable solutions for refugees in Iran.

“Economic Inclusion means enabling refugees to be net contributors to economic growth and job-creation. It is one of the most important keys to unlocking durable solutions for refugees”

Filippo Grandi, UN High Commissioner for Refugees

Thanks to the Government’s progressive and inclusive policies, refugees in Iran are able to work in a range of occupations.

Empowering refugees means they can give back to the Iranian communities that have generously hosted them for decades. Refugee-run businesses have boosted local economies by creating jobs for other refugees and the host community and promoted innovation in local industries. It is a win-win situation.

Through the Solutions Strategy for Afghan Refugees, UNHCR in Iran builds the skills, capacities and entrepreneurial know-how of Afghan refugees so that, when the conditions become conducive to their return to Afghanistan, they are better prepared to rebuild their lives, reintegrate their communities, and contribute to reconstructing their country.

UNHCR works with the Government of Iran and non-governmental partners to provide livelihoods opportunities to refugees, in line with the Refugee Livelihoods and Economic Inclusion (2019-2023) Global Strategy.

Improving livelihoods and achieving economic inclusion of refugees cannot be done by UNHCR alone and requires the engagement of a broad range of stakeholders, leveraging the added value and strategic positioning of different actors.

Finding practical ways to increase engagement of a range of actors to increase livelihoods opportunities for refugees while at the same time reducing pressure on host communities, is a key element of the Global Refugee Forum, the first of which will take place on 17 and 18 December 2019 in Geneva, Switzerland.