|Jaartal||Kwartaal||Asylum applications||Following family members (persons)|
Last year, 24,740 asylum seekers submitted a first asylum application, the highest number since 2015. Due to international travel restrictions and partially closed borders as a result of the coronavirus crisis, the number was low in the previous year (13,720). In 2019, there were still 22,540 first applications, 10 percent fewer than in 2021.
Most first applications in final quarter of 2021
The first quarter of 2021 had the lowest number of applications: 2,720. In February, the IND received the lowest number (780) of applications and in September the highest (3,950), partly due to the arrival of Afghan nationals following the situation in Afghanistan. After September, the number of asylum seekers decreased again, to 2,415 in December.
In Q3 2021, the Netherlands handled 8,815 applications. With a total of 9,870 requests, Q4 had the highest number of asylum seekers.
Almost 1 in 3 asylum seekers from Syria
As in previous years, people with Syrian nationality formed the largest group of asylum seekers in 2021, accounting for almost 34 percent (8,380) of the total. This is more than double the number one year previously. Nearly half of the applications by Syrians (3,940) were submitted in the final quarter of the year.
Afghan (3,005) and Turkish (2,460) nationals constituted the next largest groups in 2021, after Syrians. The number of first requests by Afghan applicants rose by 2,615, nearly eight times as many as in the previous year. Eighty-eight percent of applications by Afghan nationals took place in the last two quarters of 2021. The increase was partly related to the evacuation flights from Afghanistan.
Family reunification more than doubled
The number of following family members stood at 10,120 last year, i.e. 6,255 more than in 2020. In 2019, the Netherlands received 4,180 following relatives. The number of applications by dependents was smallest in Q1 2021 (1,510) and largest in Q4 2021 (3,230).
The increase in 2021 is almost entirely on account of Syrian nationals. Last year, 6,440 Syrian family members travelled to the Netherlands, almost two thirds of all following relatives. Compared to 2020, Syrian family reunification rose by 4,980.
In the same period, family reunification of Turkish nationals increased by 480 to 735. Reunification by Yemeni dependents and stateless persons went up by 650 and 340, respectively. Only the number of dependents with Eritrean nationality decreased substantially, from 1,070 in 2020 to 730 one year later.