Accommodation needed for 13,500 asylum permit holders in the second half of this year
The government has asked municipalities and provinces to house 13,500 asylum permit holders in the second half of 2022. Asylum permit holders are asylum seekers who have been granted a Dutch residence permit, for example because they have fled from war, violence or persecution. Minister for Migration Eric van der Burg made an announcement to this effect during the national coordination meeting on migration and integration (Landelijke Regietafel Migratie en Integratie, LRT) held earlier. The target was published in the Government Gazette on 8 April.
It is based on the number of asylum seekers who are expected to be granted a residence permit in the period from 1 April until 30 September 2022: more than 9,000. An interim evaluation has shown that the number of asylum seekers who were granted a residence permit in the second half of 2021 was higher than forecast. One of the reasons for this was that the number of Afghan evacuees who came to the Netherlands exceeded expectations. This comes on top of the aforementioned number of more than 9,000. This means that municipalities need to prepare to house 13,500 asylum permit holders in the second half of 2022. The backlogs from the previous target will be added automatically and are not included in the total of 13,500.
In July 2022, another interim evaluation will be carried out to assess whether the number still meets expectations or needs to be adjusted. If it turns out that more asylum permit holders will need to be housed, their number will be added to the next target.
Reception of asylum seekers poses immense challenge
Some municipalities are struggling to house asylum seekers due to a lack of suitable accommodation. At the same time, the reception centres operated by the Central Agency for the Reception of Asylum Seekers (Centraal Orgaan opvang Asielzoekers, COA) are overflowing. The COA reception centres are currently home to around 13,000 asylum permit holders. It is imperative to find permanent accommodation for them in order to ease the pressure on the reception centres.
It remains impossible to predict how the target will be affected by the situation in Ukraine. Once it becomes difficult to house the number of refugees from Ukraine, it will be necessary to find a distinct solution that is unrelated to the target.