Providing up-to-date statistics on asylum seekers in Australia and internationally.




People in detention in Australia (including 334 on Christmas Island). Source: Department of Home Affairs.


People in detention on Nauru, including 36 children. As of 23 November 2017 there are 0 people in the Manus Island Detention Centre, all men now in one of three transition centres. Source: Department of Home Affairs and ABC News.


People in detention on Manus Island and Nauru resettled in the US. Source: ABC News and The Guardian.


Children in detention, 36 located on Nauru and 5 on the Australia mainland. Source: Department of Home Affairs.


Children in community detention in Australia. Source: Department of Home Affairs.


Voluntary returns of people in detention on Manus or Nauru back to their country of origin between September 2013 to 31 December 2017. Increased by 10 people since 30 September. Source: Operation Sovereign Borders.


Average days spent in immigration detention. Source: Department of Home Affairs.


Number of deaths in onshore and offshore detention facilities since 2010.

8 of these deaths have been of men in detention facilities on Manus Island or Nauru. Source: Australian Border Death Database.

$4.89 billion

Total spent on Manus and Nauru detention centres. In 2014-15 the centres cost $1.1 billion and in 2013-2014 $1.2 billion. Sources: Australian Parliamentary Library, Canberra Times and Refugee Council Australia.

3 out of 6

The number of refugees who have resettled in Cambodia from Nauru, at a cost of $55 million. Three of the six refugees who were transferred to Cambodia have since returned to their country of origin. Sources: The Guardian and Asian Correspondent.


32 boats and 771 people turned back

Known boat turn backs since September 2013 under Operation Sovereign Borders, the last boat turned around was in August 2017 and contained 7 people. Source: Sydney Morning Herald

Under the Howard Government from 2001 to 2003 5 boats containing 614 people were turned back. Sources:  Australian Government Press Release and ReliefWeb Report

Sources: Parliamentary Library & Australian Customs

Source: Australian Border Deaths Database


17,555 visas

Refugee visas granted by the Australian government in 2015-16, made up of 15,552 offshore visas and 2003 onshore visas. The Prime Minister has pledged that the Humanitarian Program will increase to 18,750 visas by 2018-19. Source: Department of Home Affairs and The Guardian.

12,000 additional visas in response to the Syrian and Iraqi Humanitarian Crisis

As of 21 March 2017 all additional visas have been granted to people who have fled the conflict in Syria and Iraq. These 12,000 visas are in addition to the 13,750 refugees taken in the annual Humanitarian Program.

22,417 humanitarian visas have been granted to displaced people from Syria and Iraq between 1 July 2015 to 3- June 2017, of these 21,673 have settled in Australia. Source: Department of Home Affairs.

19,129 applications

People awaiting an outcome of their refugee application whilst living in Australia on a Bridging Visa E. This includes 3,277 children. Source: Department of Home Affairs.


2 million new applications

Asylum applications lodged between January and December 2016, the majority received in Germany. Source: UNHCR.

2.8 million pending applications

Individuals awaiting outcomes on their applications for asylum or refugee status globally in 2016. Source: UNHCR.

1.5 million actioned applications

Asylum cases decided on in 2016, the largest number on record. Source: UNHCR


Of all asylum applications lodged in Australia in 2016. Source: UNHCR

1 in 5 are children

358, 403 refugees migrated to Europe from 1 January to 21 December 2016 by boat, 4,913 of these are missing. 1,011,712 refugees migrated to Europe in 2015. Source: IOM

Source: International Organization for Migration

Statistics are updated monthly. Request an asylum statistic: