New EMN inform outlines how EMN Member and Observer Countries manage housing capacity in the context of international protection. Between 2017 and 2021, many EMN Member and Observer Countries experienced a high degree of volatility in the number of applicants for international protection, which in some countries led to tensions in the reception systems. This inform aims to gather information that can help policymakers better organise their reception systems in a flexible manner, whilst anticipating further changing inflows in the future.
Between 2017 and 2021, the number of applicants for international protection increased in many EMT Member States and Observer States, putting pressure on reception systems. Although the number of asylum applications in the EU did not reach the level of 2015-2016, it increased by almost 34% in 2021 compared to 2020, returning to the level that existed before the COVID-19 pandemic.
Housing and support services for beneficiaries of international protection vary considerably between EMT member states and observer states. Some EMT member states and observer states allow beneficiaries of international protection to continue to stay in the reception center until suitable accommodation is found. In some EMT member states and observer states, beneficiaries of international protection are provided with housing, for example, in one of the country’s regions or municipalities.
The report identifies the following major problems in EU countries: limited availability of adequate housing outside reception institutions; difficulties in opening new reception facilities, such as finding a suitable location, as well as the Russian invasion of Ukraine led to a high demand for immediate support, including accommodation.
*EMT member states and observer states – EU member states, Norway, Georgia, Moldova, Ukraine.