Cabinet sets Multiannual Production Forecast
The cabinet is preparing for an influx of over 70,000 asylum applicants this year. This is reflected in the Multiannual Production Forecast (Multiannual Productie Prognose, MPP), which State Secretary Van der Burg (J&V) submitted to the House of Representatives today.
In the semi-annual MPP, the government outlines which scenarios of asylum influx must be taken into account. Turbulence in countries both within and outside the European continent generate a high expected asylum influx. Given the wide range of uncertainties, the cabinet maintains a scenario between the mid and maximum scenario: over 70,000 asylum applicants. The expected influx of unaccompanied minor foreign nationals has also been substantially increased by 27 per cent.
For the Central Agency for the Reception of Asylum Seekers (COA), this expected influx represents a need for 77,100 refugee accommodation beds by 2024. The forecasted high influx of asylum seekers will result in the highest target for municipalities in the number of permit holders to be accommodated since 2015. The number of people with residence permits to be housed has been set at 27,300 for the second half of 2023.
Asylum in the Netherlands must be humane and fair, but also effective and manageable. The government does not view the influx as inevitable and is actively committed to gaining more control over migration, both within the Netherlands and abroad. Across Europe, the number of applicants reporting for asylum is increasing. The Netherlands remains committed at the highest political level to giving new impetus to the European discussion on migration. It is working hard to cooperate with countries of origin and transit countries to prevent illegal migration and facilitate return. In addition, the European Commission is strengthening external borders.
In addition to efforts at home and abroad to gain control over migration, the government has taken measures with parties in the chain to prepare for the expected influx. The Cabinet fully understands the pressure exerted by asylum reception on municipalities, provinces, chain organisations and society. Through, among other things, stable funding, strengthening of the Provincial Regulation Tables, the realisation of a permanent supply by the COA and the development of small-scale reception, efforts are being made to ensure sufficient reception facilities. In addition, by making flexible housing available, support is provided to municipalities to get movement in the house-hunting market while at the same time promoting the outflow from the asylum seekers' reception towards the housing of permit holders.
It is not possible for the Immigration and Naturalisation Service (IND) to increase the number of decisions in such a way as to keep up with the influx or catch up with the workload. This issue can no longer be resolved by the IND alone and the implications extend beyond this organisation or the asylum chain. Measures have therefore been taken to prevent backlogs from increasing further. On the one hand, by processing applications for asylum from Syrians and Yemenis who are eligible for short-term consideration more efficiently, for example by more targeted interviews. On the other hand, applications from asylum seekers whose chances of being granted asylum are actually low, such as Algerian and Moldovan asylum seekers, are being given priority.
In addition, research is being done into how to design the start of the asylum process - the identification and registration process (I&R) - in such a way to ensure that asylum seekers are registered as early as possible in their asylum process.
Asylum granting rate investigation
Although the asylum policy remained largely unchanged, there has been an increase in the percentage of asylum applications granted from 2020 onwards. Based on the differences in the composition of the asylum population between the Netherlands and other member states, the high average acceptance rate can largely be explained. For several nationalities, however, the Netherlands grants more than a several years ago and grants more than other member states. Research by the Cabinet shows that particularly the implementation practice has changed. Partly due to court rulings, the IND increasingly must demonstrate that asylum protection is not necessary rather than the asylum seeker having to make it plausible that he is entitled to asylum. In addition, asylum law in the Netherlands has undergone a development whereby more categorical assessments are made as opposed to looking at the individual.
The government intends to bring the implementation practice in line with European frameworks. In this way, the government will prevent the Netherlands from becoming unnecessarily attractive as a country of destination. For instance, the group policy will be revised so that individual assessment will weigh more heavily. In addition, the Dutch evidence distribution, including the credibility assessment, will be reviewed to see whether it is in line with European law. In addition, information from other Member States is obtained about their country policy and IND is strengthening its quality control. This is done in a way that is feasible as well as in line with international treaties. Some of the measures can take effect quickly, others require further elaboration.
In addition to the above, the Cabinet is in talks to arrive at a strategic migration agenda. A fundamental reorientation of asylum has also been initiated.