Chinese Asylum Seekers in Australia Triple in 1 Year

Records show that the number of the Chinese who sought asylum in Australia tripled in the past one year.

Australia’s Department of Home Affairs revealed that up to 9,315 residents from China migrated to Australia in 2017/2018, seeking asylum. The number of asylum-seekers from China in the previous year had been 2,269, giving a 311% increase in the influx of refugees from China into Australia within just 12 months.

Chinese Asylum Seekers in Australia Triple in 1 Year

These refugees have their various statuses and reasons for fleeing their country which they presented to the Administrative Appeals Tribunal, AAT for short. Some of them claimed they belonged to a persecuted group; some claimed they were LGBT while others claimed they had a love child in Australia.

However, Joyce Chia, the Director of Policy at the Refugee Council of Australia, remarked that a good number of these asylum-seekers from China had previously obtained student or tourist visas and were already in Australia, using these visas.

She cited the thriving international student market in Australia which was worth almost $32billion. She felt the Chinese were increasingly gaining access into Australia.

Australia keeps attracting more Chinese international students

In the past one year, Australia had issued about 652,000 visas to international students, out of which close to 200,000 were given to applicants from China.

An Associate Professor of Law, Mary Anne Kenny emphasized that applicants for asylum who were already in the country either on tourist or student visas, have by virtue of already being in the country, become eligible to obtain a bridging visa. This visa has different types, some of which may give an applicant the permit to work in Australia and may take some time for its processing to complete.

As of August 2018, the number of people who had a bridging visa in Australia was up to 176,000, which is a sharp contrast from the about 40,000 people who had the visa just a year before.

A spokesman from the country’s Home Affairs Department remarked that Australia did not joke with its international responsibilities.

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