HC Deb 22 April 2002 vol 384 cc30-1W
21. Mr. Viggers

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what recent assessment he has made of the effectiveness of the procedures for screening applications to enter the United Kingdom. [47082]

Angela Eagle

In 2001, 71,700 people applied for asylum on arrival in the United Kingdom. This represents an 11 per cent. fall in applications compared with a 2 per cent. fall for the European Union generally.

Overall there were a record 118,000 decisions made with 74 per cent. refused, 9 per cent. granted asylum and 17 per cent. granted exceptional leave to remain. The backlog of undecided applications was more than halved and continues to fall.

79 per cent. of appeals were dismissed by the Immigration Appellate Authority (IAA) in 2001. This is an indication that despite the increase in decision-making, the quality remains high.

Provisionally, 9,285 principal applicants were removed in 2001, an increase of 3 per cent. on 2000 and the highest annual total on record.