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First-time asylum applicants up by 12% in Q3 2019

17/12/2019

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During the third quarter of 2019, 166 400 first-time asylum seekers applied for international protection in the Member States of the European Union (EU). This was an increase of 12% compared with the second quarter of 2019.

 

First-time asylum seekers by citizenship, EU

 

Most applications from Syrians, Afghans and Venezuelans

With 20 900 first-time applicants between July and September 2019, Syrians remained the largest group of persons seeking international protection in the EU Member States, ahead of Afghans (14 400 first-time applicants) and Venezuelans (9 600). In the third quarter of 2019, people from these countries comprised the three main citizenships of first-time asylum applicants in the EU Member States, and accounted for 27% of all first-time asylum applicants.

 

First-time asylum seekers by citizenship, EU Q3 2019

 

Most applicants for asylum in Germany, France and Spain

During the third quarter of 2019, the highest number of first-time applicants was registered in Germany (with 37 300 first-time asylum applicants, or 22% of total first-time applicants in the EU Member States), followed by France (30 500, or 18%) and Spain (25 800, or 16%). These three Member States together accounted for 56% of all first-time asylum applicants in the EU-28 in the third quarter of 2019.

 

Highest number of first-time applicants relative to the population in Cyprus

Compared with the population of each Member State, the highest rate of registered first-time applicants during the third quarter of 2019 was recorded in Cyprus (3 305 first-time applicants per million population), Malta (2 691) and Greece (1 645). By contrast, the lowest rates were observed in Slovakia (12 applicants per million population), Hungary (15) and Poland (18). In the third quarter of 2019, there were in total 324 first-time asylum applicants per million population in the EU as a whole.

 

Almost 900 000 asylum applications still pending

Pending applications for international protection are those that have been made at any time and are still under consideration by the relevant national authorities at the end of the reference period. In other words, they refer to the “stock” of applications for which decisions are still pending.

At the end of September 2019, 874 700 applications for asylum protection in the EU Member States were under consideration by the national authorities, a decrease of 1% compared with both September 2018 and June 2019. With 339 700 pending applications at the end of September 2019, Germany had the largest share in the EU (39% of the EU total), ahead of Spain (124 500, or 14%), Greece (90 200, or 10%) and France (66 800, or 8%).

 

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