germany, Migrants

Germany spent 20 billion euros on refugees in 2016

A quarter of the amount went to asylum seekers who were still waiting to be processed, while over half went to combatting the causes of forced migration. More than a million migrants have entered Germany since 2015.

Source: Getty Images

The German government in 2016 provided 9.3 billion euros ($10.4 billion) to its sixteen states for assisting migrants and 11 billion euros on measures designed to fight the causes of forced migration and displacement abroad.

The figures are from a federal government report expected to be approved and published by Chancellor Angela Merkel's cabinet on Wednesday.

A total of 5.5 billion euros was spent for migrants who were seeking asylum and were not yet recognized by the state. The funds spent within Germany also went towards an integration package that cost 2 billion euros, while 400 million euros was spent on shelter for asylum seekers and 350 million euros on unaccompanied minors.

The state of North Rhein-Westphalia received the most funding (1.2 billion euros), followed by Bavaria (860 million euros) and Baden-Württemberg (728 million euros).

German public opinion on the large influx of refugees has remained mostly positive, with almost 40 percent of surveyed citizens saying they were very or mostly sure that Germany can overcome the challenges posed by migration flows.

Combating the causes of forced migration

The Federal Ministry of Finance announced that 11 billion euros were spent directly on additional measures to fight the causes of forced migration and displacement - measures Merkel's chief of staff, Peter Altmaier, on Wednesday claimed were working.

"In the past year, we have seen the number of new arrivals coming over to Greece from Turkey dramatically reduced," Altmaier told the German Rheinische Post newspaper. "It also appears that the influx of migrants on the Libya-Italy route is falling rather going up. Our commitment to improving the situation in Libya, Mali and Niger appears to be paying off."

Germany has deployed Bundeswehr troops in a number of countries to dismantle migrant trafficking networks and support the fight against Islamist groups.

Source: dw.com

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