Summary of key trends observed
Latest data available to UNHCR RR SEE indicate that the overall number of submitted asylum applications in the South-East Europe (Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo*, Montenegro, North Macedonia, Serbia) increased by 25% compared to September. This different is mainly due to Bosnia and Herzegovina applications. At the same time the overall number of recorded arrivals has increased by 4.6% in the region compared to September. Lower number of reported intentions to apply for asylum in comparison with the number of applications continues to increase. This would indicate that perceptions of prospective asylumseekers on integration opportunities, as well as on rather lengthy waiting period for the first instance governmental decisions on asylum are possibly adversely affecting their decisions to pursue asylum avenues in the SEE Region and instead continue to move onwards and abandon their asylumclaims at the very beginning of the asylum application process.
Latest data reveal different and increasing dynamics when it comes to correlation between the numbers of expressions to seek asylum versus actual numbers of lodged applications. Important to observe is that only 6% of the intentions are converted to actual asylum applications, this proportion is decreasing mainly due to the increasing of number of intentions. It is important to analyse and compare this continuing trend with the relevant data on the asylum decisions and their respective grounds once available, at the end of the year.
Current asylum processing trend analysis indicate that out of the total of 9447 applications for asylum, only 224 first instance decisions have been reached (only 2.4% of the overall number of applications) in 2019. At the same time, it is important to observe that out of this limited number of decisions, only 18.3% of them correlate to granting the refugee status (only in Montenegro,
Serbia and Kosovo*), while 49.5% applications have been rejected.
The total number of pending decisions recorded stands at above 1359. As the majority of applications have been closed, mainly due to the applicant having absconded the asylum procedure. It is important to note that in November no cases were granted refugee or with subsidiary protection status in the region.
Age, gender and vulnerability indicate that number of applications by female asylum seekers represents 23.5% of total applications. This is stable compared to September. The September trend analysis indicates some 497 children (only 62 UASC) among applicants. The increased number children applicants (+29%) in October indicate that more families are seeking asylum in the SEE Region and that majority of them originate from Middle East.