£169,000 Bill To Send Each Individual Migrant To Rwanda Has Everyone Asking The Same Question

Senior Tory Caroline Nokes asked is this really "value for money".
Home secretary Suella Braverman is determined to get the Rwanda system off the ground – but she may have just met yet another major obstacle.
Home secretary Suella Braverman is determined to get the Rwanda system off the ground – but she may have just met yet another major obstacle.
Joe Giddens - PA Images via Getty Images

The cost of sending each individual asylum seeker to Rwanda comes to a whopping £169,000, according to new analysis – and people are, naturally, flabbergasted.

According to an economic impact analysis from the government itself, out of that £169,000, Rwanda would get £105,000; the home office’s services would cost £18,000; the escorted flight would cost £22,000; detention would cost £7,000; and the ministry of justice’s legal aid would cost £1,000.

An extra 9% was added on to the estimates, too, to account for optimism with these costs.

The analysis is an economic assessment of the Illegal Migration Bill, which aims to send people who enter the UK via “illegal” means to Rwanda.

The deportation scheme is yet to send any individual over to the east African country, but since the government first announced the bill, it has caused major consternation and international legal challenges.

The proposal is yet to pass into law as it is still being debated in the Lords.

The analysis did also point out that deporting migrants would save taxpayers between £106,000 and £165,000 per person – but, considering it costs £169,000, that’s still additional cost of between £63,000 and £4,000.

Deporting the 11,000 who have arrived to the UK already this year would also cost £1.8 billion, based on these estimates.

According to the analysis, it would need to deter around 37% of people from ever crossing the Channel if it wants to break even.

The exact breakdown of costs is unavailable because it’s “commercially sensitive” information.

Setting up fees for the deal were not included in this analysis either – and the UK has already paid Rwanda £140 million, even though it has received no migrants.

Home secretary Suella Braverman just said the assessment shows “doing nothing is not an option”, lashing out at the people smugglers who are paid to get people into the UK.

Meanwhile, the cost of living crisis is rumbling on, and Rishi Sunak just confirmed he had no plans to help people with mortgages even as interest rates were just hiked to 5%.

He has also indicated he might not follow pay review bodies’ recommendations over salary increases for public sector workers, including NHS employees.

So, this cost analysis has been scrutinised from across the House.

Senior Conservative MP and chair of the commons’ women and equality committee Caroline Nokes said the scheme was already “difficult to justify”.

“The value for money question is a perfectly legitimate and important one.” She told Sky News: “It’s worrying when the home office themselves are saying that they can’t be certain that these figures are accurate and they’re all predicated on the Rwandan scheme acting as a deterrent – and to date, we’ve not seen it act as a deterrent.”

Yvette Cooper, Labour’s shadow home secretary also said that the Tories are “taking the country for fools”.

“The few figures the home office has produced show how chaotic and unworkable their plans are. It suggests that if Rishi Sunak were actually able to deliver on his promise to remove every asylum seeker who arrives in the UK it would cost billions of pounds more even than the Tories’ broken asylum system today,” she said.

The SNP also slammed the cost analysis saying, it “adds an extra layer of disgust” to the “inhumane priorities of the Tories”.

Twitter seemed to agree, as it rolled out its usual mix of sarcastic and sincere takes:


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