Cost of refugee crisis seen rising to 600 mln this year


Greece will have to spend some 600 million euros, or 0.3 percent of its gross domestic product, on tackling the refugee crisis this year, the Bank of Greece has reportedly concluded.

The reports suggest that the central bank conducted a study into the amount of public money that would be needed to deal with the influx and delivered its findings in December. The report has not been made public.

The biggest single share of the spending (35.7 percent) will go on open reception facilities, then search and rescue (26.3 percent).

Almost 900,000 refugees and migrants arrived by sea in Greece last year and the figures for the past month indicate there will be no letup this year. A recent study by the International Monetary Fund indicated that the fiscal cost of asylum seekers in Greece was 300 million euros, or 0.17 percent of GDP, last year. As a proportion of the national economy, this was the sixth highest out of 18 European Union countries on the list.