Select Committee on European Union Fifth Report


Letter from Lesley Pallett, Immigration and Nationality Department, to Lord Wallace, Chairman of Sub-Committee F

UK SCHENGEN APPLICATION: REQUEST FOR INFORMATION BY SELECT COMMITTEE ON THE EUROPEAN COMMUNITIES

  You requested further information in connection with the UK's Schengen application. You asked for some figures on third country nationals, legally resident in the UK, who would require visas to travel to the rest of the EU. The available estimates for the last five years are as follows:

1999
1998
1997
1996
1995
1,000,000
900,000
860,000
770,000
780,000


  These estimates are based on the results of the 1995-99 British Labour Force Surveys which are sample surveys of the whole population resident in private households. It has therefore not been possible to determine the exact immigration status of each individual. It has, however, been possible to narrow these figures down by subtracting the number of asylum applicants (awaiting an initial decision or an appeal) from the total figure as these third country nationals would not be eligible to travel to other Member States of the European Union while their applications were still outstanding. As the 1999 statistics for the number of refused asylum applications have not yet been produced, the above figure for 1999 does include asylum seekers.

  You also asked for information about the number of visa applications made at British Diplomatic Posts in the Member States of the European Union for travel to the UK. The Foreign and Commonwealth Office have provided the following figures for the past five years:

1999
1998
1997
1996
1995
76,650
75,320
83,510
84,760
84,410


  The statistics for 1999 do not include the figures for December, as they are not yet fully available.

  These figures are, of course, only indicative as they include all visa applications not just those legally resident in the EU, for whom figures are not available.

  I hope this is helpful. Please do not hesitate to contact me if I can be of any further help.

25 January 2000


 
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