In 2022-23, onshore asylum seekers were 33% less than under Peter Dutton

Mar 20, 2024
People shadows

The Department of Home Affairs (DHA) this week published full year data on onshore asylum seekers in 2022-23 compared to 2022-21. The data highlights a post-pandemic high of 18,738 asylum applications in 2022-23 compared to 10,564 in 2021-22. That is still well below the record set under Peter Dutton of almost 28,000 asylum applications in 2017-18.

The major source countries were India (2,333); China (1,598); Vietnam (1,123); Indonesia (1,069); Malaysia (1,038); Tonga (795); Thailand (721); Pakistan (689); Ukraine (617) and Myanmar (614). This is very different to the situation in 2017-18 when 67% of asylum applications were from just Malaysia and China).

In percentage terms, the major growth came from Indonesia (284%); Ukraine (235%); India (166%); Pakistan (161%); Tonga (128%); Vietnam (95%); Myanmar (26%).

The total number of protection visas grants in 2022-23 was 2,000 (a grant rate of 13.6% based on applications finalised in 2022-23). This compares to 1,762 protection visas granted in 2021-22.

The major visa grant nationalities were Myanmar (427 visas with a grant rate of 91.4%); China (255 with a grant rate of 8.4%); Pakistan (171 with a grant rate of 60.2%); PNG (94 with a grant rate of 63.1%); Iran (89 with a grant rate of 92.7%); Afghanistan (83 with a grant rate of 94.3%; Iraq (80 with a grant rate of 82.5%); Ethiopia (78 with a grant rate of 83.9%); Venezuela (51 with a grant rate of 98.1%) and Malaysia (46 with a grant rate of 1.9%).

At the end of 2022-23, there were 28,324 unprocessed asylum applications at the primary stage, up from 26,227 at the end 2021-22. At the Administrative Appeals Tribunal (AAT), there were 40,137 asylum applications at end of 2022-23 compared to 37,025 at the end of 2021-22.

In early October 2023, the Albanese Government announced a package of measures to address the asylum seeker situation. That was the first formal announcement of a package of measures to address this since before the biggest labour trafficking scam abusing the asylum system in Australian history. That started under Peter Dutton in 2015. Dutton ignored the issue while railing about the risk of asylum seekers by boat under a Labor Government.

But the problem has been allowed to grow so big that it will take many years and a fortune in taxpayer money to get things back under control. Even then, there is no chance of Australia ever getting back to the situation that existed before Dutton became Minister for Home Affairs when there were around 5,000 asylum applications at the AAT. 

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