Asylum drop leaving billions for increased room for maneuver

Oslo. Prime Minister Erna Solberg and Minister of Finance Siv Jensen.OSLO.Photo: Prime Minister Erna Solberg and Minister of Finance Siv Jensen..: Berit Roald / NTB scanpix

The asylum flow to Norway has slowed down sharply. This provides the Finance minister Siv Jensen with many billion kroner extra to spend in next year’s budget.

If the asylum influx continues at current levels, we will only get around 3,500 asylum seekers to Norway this year. This is one-tenth of last year’s number.
Thus, there is probably a need for far less money to deal with asylum seekers in 2017 than in the current year.

Based on the Directorate of Immigration’s (UDI) numbers for what it costs to have an applicant resident in a receiption centre for one year, the expense of the current influx alone will be 5.6 billion lower next year than this year, according to calculations made by the news agency NTB .
Even an influx  of 10,000 this year, which UDI predicts, will lead to the state needing 4.3 billion less in reception centre costs for next year compared to this year.

This gives Jensen and her government colleagues greater leeway in the 2017 budget, which will be presented on October 6.

Several expenses spared

The calculations rests on all the asylum seekers on average spending one year in a reception centre, before they either get residency or are being sent out of the country. In reality, many live longer than one year at the receiption centres.

UDI’s figures for 2015 show that it cost 149,800 kroner to have an adult resident in a reception center for one year. For unaccompanied minor asylum seekers the total amount is 486,600 per occupant.

In addition to lower costs of reception centers, the state also could expect to spend less money in several other areas.

One of them is the deportation of asylum seekers who have had their application rejected. Last year the Police Immigration Service (PU) used NOK 150 million on various costs associated with the removal and transportation, NTB was told.

Processing work by the Immigration authorities is another cost that will  be reduced on the state budget for 2017 , if the influx stays as low as predicted today.

Other expense items that will drop with reduced influx, are the expenses for interpreters and registration with the police.


Source: NTB scanpix / Norway Today




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