Some of those who arrived in Sweden during the 2015 refugee crisis are still awaiting a decision.
Some of those who arrived in Sweden during the 2015 refugee crisis are still awaiting a decision. Credit: Johan Nilsson / TT

Migration Agency falls further behind on asylum claims

General Director: The open cases will take longer to process.
1:05 min

General Director Mikael Ribbenvik said that the Swedish Migration Agency is now only expected to make a decision on 95,000 asylum cases this year, 10,000 fewer than it had previously predicted.

"Today we have a larger number of open asylum cases which are more complicated than before," he said. "These cases have, in practice, shown themselves to take longer to process than planned."

He admitted that some of those who sought asylum in 2015 and 2016 still have not received a decision on whether they will be allowed to stay in Sweden.

"Many who sought asylum in 2015 and 2016 have received a decision on their cases. The goal, in principle, is that all the rest should get a decision this year," he said.

The Migration Agency said that it plans to receive 34,700 new asylum seekers in 2017, a 20 percent increase from the 29,000 Sweden received in 2016.

Despite signs of increasing numbers of refugees coming to Europe, this projection has remained unchanged from the last report released in February. 

"The forces pushing people to come to Europe continue to be strong across the world," the Swedish Migration Agency wrote in a press release. "This does not, however, appear to have affected Sweden significantly this year."

The Agency predicts that the actual number of asylum seekers could vary between 22,000 and 45,000 people in 2017.

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