Refugee migration policy to EU not improved in 2021

Johan Leman, 12 January 2022

According to UNHCR estimates, the country that saw the most refugee migrants arrive in 2021 is Italy with 67,040 people, followed by Spain with 42,182, Greece with 8,715 and Malta with 698. The IOM estimates that 1,864 will have died at sea by 2021. The UNHCR is talking about 1,838 dead and missing. So the estimates are close.

The total number of arrivals in 2021, all together, e.g. including Cyprus, is estimated at 122,485, of which 116,573 arrived by sea and 5,912 by land. By comparison, in 2020, there were 95,031 arrivals and 1,401 deaths and missing persons. The 2021 figures are closest to the 2019 figures, when 123,663 people entered Europe. Then there were 1,335 deaths and missing persons. In 2021, however, approximately 500 more people drowned than in 2019, when approximately 1,000 more people reached Europe.

As far as the origin of the arrivals is concerned, Tunisians are in first place in 2021, followed by Egyptians, Bangladeshis, Syrians and Iranians. There is a significant increase in unaccompanied minors.

Migration policy at the EU level has not improved over the last few years in terms of results.