UK is spending nearly £7m EVERY DAY on asylum seekers' hotel bills
Taxpayers are paying nearly £7million a day to house tens of thousands of asylum seekers in hotels after the Home Office managed to process just four per cent of asylum claims from people who crossed the Channel last year, it has emerged.
Some 96 per cent of asylum applications submitted by migrants making the journey in 2021 are still outstanding, Dan O'Mahoney, Border Force clandestine threat commander, told the Home Affairs Select Committee.
Of the 4 per cent completed, 85 per cent were granted refugee status or another protection status.
MPs heard £5.6m a day was being spent on hotels for people who have arrived in the UK and have submitted a claim, with an additional £1.2m paid to house Afghan refugees who fled the Taliban takeover while long-term accommodation is sought.
The total £6.8m is over £2m more than the Government said it was spending in February (£4.7m). Asked by committee chairwoman Dame Diana Johnson if the cost was likely to go up again, Abi Tierney, director general of the passport office and UK visas and immigration, replied: 'Yes.'
It also emerged that the proportion of attempted crossings that were being intercepted by French police has fallen, from around 50 per cent last year to 42.5 per cent so far in 2022. The French have stopped 28,000 migrants from crossing in 1,072 boats this year, Mr O'Mahoney told MPs.
He accepted this was a lower percentage but stressed it was a 'much, much bigger number', telling how French authorities had stopped 28,000 migrants crossing the Channel and intercepted and destroyed 1,072 boats so far this year.