Rt Hon Lord Lilley

    Mr. Lilley: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many people who originally entered the UK illegally in 2002 and previous years were (a) granted asylum, (b) granted exceptional leave to remain and (c) removed in 2002. [152861]

    Beverley Hughes [holding answer 4 February 2004]: The information requested is not available. Information is not collated centrally on how many asylum applicants

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    enter the UK illegally in any given year. The available information could be obtained only at disproportionate cost by examination of individual case records and would be unreliable.

    Overall it is estimated that 42 per cent. of total asylum applications made in 2002 resulted in grants of asylum (10 per cent.), or of exceptional leave to remain (23 per cent.) or in allowed appeals (10 per cent.), including outcomes occurring after 2002. Corresponding information on the numbers of failed asylum seekers who applied in 2002 and have subsequently been removed is not available and could be produced only at disproportionate cost by examination of individual case files.

    Information on the outcomes of asylum-related initial decisions, and appeals, and removals is published in the annual statistical bulletin ‘Asylum Statistics United Kingdom 2002‘, a copy of which is available from the Library, and quarterly on the Home Office Research Development and Statistics Directorate website at http://www.homeoffice.gov.uk/rds/immigration1.html. The next publication will be available on 24 February 2004.