Press ReleasePublished: 9 September 2022
Over 4.6 million people seek safety in Europe by mid-2022
Millions of persons fleeing Ukraine have registered for temporary protection in EU+ countries, while asylum applications have been increasing in recent months.
Analysis released by the European Union Agency for Asylum (EUAA) shows that during the first half of 2022, EU+ countries received around 406 000 asylum applications, up by two thirds (68%) compared to the same period in 2021.
In June about 73 100 asylum applications were lodged in the EU+. This was the second highest monthly level since the so-called “refugee crisis” of 2015-2016, lodged mostly by Afghans (9 100), Syrians (8 900), Venezuelans (4 800), Colombians (3 900), Pakistanis (3 700) and Turkish nationals (3 600). During the same month, Ukrainians lodged some 1 200 applications for asylum, which is a separate status from temporary protection (see below).
With about 2 600 applications, Georgian nationals again lodged the most applications on record in June. A recent EUAA report on migration drivers in Georgia identified the Russian invasion of Ukraine as an important push factor.
EU+ recognition rate close to its highest point since 2017
The EU+ recognition rate in June stood at 44%, remaining close to the peak seen in May (45%) that had been the highest EU+ recognition rate since early 2017. Total positive decisions were almost evenly split between refugee status and subsidiary protection. Syrians and Ukrainians continued to see very high recognition rates in June (96% each), with most positive decisions issued to Syrians, and nearly all issued to Ukrainians, being granted subsidiary protection.
The activation of the Temporary Protection Directive for those fleeing the Russian invasion of Ukraine not only averted extreme pressure on the Common European Asylum System (CEAS), it also enabled them to find safety without having to undergo an asylum procedure. Between 24 February and 4 September, more than 4.2 million people, mostly Ukrainian nationals, had registered for temporary protection in the EU+.
Taken together, asylum applications and temporary protection registrations mean that migration to Europe by people in search of protection has reached historic levels in 2022.
- EUAA EPS data are preliminary and might differ from validated official statistics submitted to Eurostat at a later stage. Eurostat data are used in the annual EUAA Asylum Report. The total EPS numbers include an approximation for one EU+ country and may change after data updates.
- This refers to the recognition rate for EU-regulated forms of protection (refugee status and subsidiary protection) at first instance.
- European Commission, Migration and Home Affairs, Temporary protection, 21 April 2022.