This is the lowest monthly figure in Norway since 2007, according to abcnyheter.no. Nevertheless UDI estimates that there will be a total of 33,000 asylum seekers in 2016.
Only back in February, March and May in 2007 fewer asylum applications were registered by UDI than in January this year.
— The reason for this is mainly that Sweden, Denmark and Norway have recently introduced border controls, comments to abcnyheter.no UDI’s press advisor Kristian Nikolai Stakset-Gundersen. Austerity measures seems to have had an effect.
In the same month last year, the number of asylum applications was 601, however, the figure understandably rocketed in autumn and had its peak in October with 8,666 asylum applications. That figure has now fallen to a record low 389.
— There is also a seasonal decline which we are used to. The number is usually lower in winter. Therefore, we assume that the influx will pick up again, says Stakset-Gundersen.
But even for January the number of asylum applications is unusually low. In January 2014 the number of asylum applications was 752, while the figures in 2013 and 2012 were respectively 990 and 779.
Still great pressure
— The number of asylum seekers arriving to Greece is still huge. There is no sign that the pressure on Europe has lowered, says UDI’s press advisor. He also reveals that UDI is expecting 33,000 asylum seekers in Norway in 2016.
Some predict even a bigger number: 60,000 asylum seekers. Sweden expects around 100,000 asylum seekers in 2016.
Afghanistan (82 of 389) and Syria (75 of 389) still remain the countries with the highest number of asylum applications.