The Costs of Rwanda Scheme Could Reach Billions

Rwanda _UK flags edit Source: Nicolas Raymond/

The Rwanda scheme’s hidden costs have been estimated to be billion of British Pounds, according to IPPR, a public policy research institute based in the United Kingdom.

The IPPR’s report finds that Rwanda may receive payments totaling between £1.1 billion and £3.9 billion for the people it sends there.

The Genuine Expenses of The UK-Rwanda Migration Collaboration

In accordance with the agreement, the UK must pay Rwanda for two things: actual relocation expenses and support for the country’s economic development through the Economic Transformation and Integration Fund, or ETIF.

In contrast to the £55,000 per person pre-Rwanda system, the UK may have to pay up to £230,000 per asylum seeker. Payments for the first group of 20,000 undocumented immigrants may total up to £3.9 billion.

The £370 million in fixed costs and an additional £120 million after 300 people are relocated to Rwanda are associated with the ETIF payments. Also, there are £20,000 in ETIF payments for every individual who is moved.

Furthermore, the UK is required to pay an additional £500 for healthcare and up to £150,874 for each relocated individual in order to cover the costs of asylum processing and integration.
The exact expenses will change based on the number of individuals who relocate to Rwanda and then leave the nation within five years.

The UK is expected to provide an additional £10.000 per person departing in order to facilitate their departure, but to cease providing ongoing payments for that individual.

“A Billion Pounds Scheme”

The IPPR also projects that Rwanda would receive payments totaling between £1.1 billion (assuming all asylum seekers depart immediately) and £3.9 billion (assuming they remain in Rwanda for a minimum of five years).

“Aside from the ethical, legal and practical objections, the Rwanda scheme is exceptionally poor value for money. For it to break even, it will need to show a strong deterrent effect, for which there is no compelling evidence. Under the government’s plans, billions could be sent to Rwanda to remove people who have already arrived irregularly since the Illegal Migration Act was passed,” said Marley Morris, IPPR associate director for migration, trade and communities.

However, the spokesperson of the Home Office said to BBC: “Doing nothing is not without significant costs. Unless we act, the cost of housing asylum seekers is set to reach £11bn per year by 2026.”

It was Boris Johnson, who first put forth the idea almost two years ago in an attempt to deter people from making risky small boat crossings of the English Channel. Since April 2022, the UK has contributed £220 million to the Economic Development Fund; additional yearly contributions of £50 million are planned for the following three years.

On January 17, 2024, the House of Commons passed the bill over the objections of a few Conservative Members of Parliament. Following that, the bill was discussed in the House of Lords, where the government lost all ten votes. Peers amended the bill in a number of ways, one of which was to allow courts to question Rwanda’s safety. However, upon returning the bill to the House of Commons, MPs rejected every modification made by the Lords.

The bill might be prepared to become a law on Wednesday following the infamous “ping pong” between the houses of Parliament. According to the government, deportation flights should begin operating by the spring.


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