Merkel reaches refugee funding deal with German states

25 Sep 15

The German government is to pay each federal state €670 a month for each refugee in their area under a deal confirmed on Thursday.

This fee has been settled under an agreement between chancellor Angela Merkel and the premiers of the 16 federal states.

The federal government is also to provide €500m for construction of social housing, and another €350m for the costs of accommodating refugees who are unaccompanied minors.

Under this deal, the federal government will shoulder the risks of the costs arising from the length of time required to process applications and the numbers involved.

Merkel declared the deal “a good day for local authorities.” She noted that Germany expected some 800,000 refugees this year and said: “We in Germany cannot effectively address the challenge posed by the refugee problem on our own.”

The agreement will also see what were called “undesirable incentives” removed, so that refugees will be housed in reception facilities and receive only non-cash benefits, with exceptional cash payments kept to a minimum.

Germany has also declared Albania, Kosovo and Montenegro as safe countries of origin, meaning nationals of those states who fail in asylum applications may be swiftly returned to their home country.

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