In 2017, the number of first applications for asylum dropped (14.720) as compared to the previous year (18,170) The recognition rate for first, second and subsequent asylum applications also decreases: from 54 per cent in 2016 to 30 per cent in 2017.
This is evident from the annual figures of the Immigration and Naturalisation Service (IND) for 2017. As expected, the number of family members of the status holders, who travel later, increased in 2017 as a result of the high number of asylum seekers at the end of 2015 and 2016. The total asylum influx (31,330), consisting of first asylum applications, repeated asylum applications and accompanying travellers, was slightly lower in 2017 than the year before (31,640). Persons with successively Syrian, Eritrean or Moroccan nationality form the top 3 nationalities that submitted a first asylum application in 2017.
Increase in regular migration
The number of the residence applications based on knowledge and talent, employment or study rose last year (36,550) as compared to 2016 (32,100). Applicants with the American, Chinese or Indian nationality form the top 3 approvals for these categories. The number of the applications in the context of regular family migration dropped last year (35,360) as compared to 2016 (36,840).
In 2017, the IND made a contribution to setting up a well-functioning, multidisciplinary working process at the external borders of Europe. IND experts were sent to Italy and Greece within the framework of the European cooperation. Among other things, they support the relocation or resettlement of asylum seekers to the Netherlands.
In 2017, the IND took further steps towards more modern services. More and more customers submit their residency application digitally. In 2017, more than 50,000 applications were submitted and processed digitally. This far-reaching electronic service fits the ambition of the IND to be a modern service provider that operates with information and data controlled. This ambition requires a new way of working. The development thereof will be a central objective in the coming years. In 2018, the IND will continue to improve its services as a whole. The important themes here are professionalisation of enforcement, complaints management, an international and more integrated asylum process and optimal cooperation with the partners in the migration chain.