Refugees in the Netherlands

Since the summer of 2015 the number of refugees entering the European Union (EU) has doubled. EU member states are calling for better reception in safe countries in the region. The Netherlands and other EU member states have also agreed to receive more asylum seekers.

Receiving refugees in Europe

The poor security situation in some parts of the world has caused an increase in the number of refugees in Europe. The ongoing war in Syria has forced many people to seek safety elsewhere. To manage this influx effectively, the Netherlands and other EU countries have agreed to divide 120,000 refugees across the various member states.

Receiving refugees in the Netherlands

Over the space of 2 years the Netherlands will receive around 7,000 of these 120,000 asylum seekers. The Netherlands previously committed to receiving 2,000 asylum seekers staying in Italy and Greece.

Distribution quota for refugees

The number of refugees each EU country can take in will be determined by a distribution quota calculated on the basis of:

  • the number of inhabitants
  • national income
  • the number of asylum applications
  • unemployment figures.

Regional reception in safe areas

The European Union wants to contribute to better reception in safe countries in the region, for instance Turkey and Jordan, so that refugees can find protection there. In this way the government wants to prevent refugees from falling victim to people smugglers or risking their lives on dangerous boat crossings to Europe.

Asylum procedure

Asylum seekers can remain in the Netherlands if returning to their own country would put them in danger. To determine if this is the case, they must follow an asylum procedure. Aliens who do not need protection and therefore do not receive a residence permit, must leave the country. For more information on this, see the topic Return Policy.