This Can’t Last for Long: Italian Scholar Speaks About ‘Cost’ of Migrant Crisis

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Migration crisis was one of the main topics on the pre-election agenda of political parties in Italy, as the heavy inflow of newcomers has stirred discontent among the country's population. Radio Sputnik discussed the issue with independent political scientist Mario Sommossa.

Italian residents are unhappy about the ongoing influx of migrants, especially due to the fact that they have to pay for their living costs, political analyst Mario Sommossa told Sputnik.

"The annual cost for each migrant residing in Italy reaches 11,000 euros. If we compare this figure with the monthly social benefits paid by the state to Italian citizens, it becomes clear that this cannot last for long. Dissatisfaction of society with regard to the situation with migrants continues to grow," the analyst stated.

In 2017, Italy spent over 4.3 billion euros on tackling the migration crisis, while the aid from Brussels was slightly less than 77 million euros, the expert noted.
Another problem is that even when the applications from asylum seekers are refused, only a few of them actually leave the country.

"The difference between Italy and Germany is that migrants in Germany usually come from countries with which it has agreements on repatriation, while in the case of Italy, most migrants come from Africa and states where there are no such agreements, or they are not being respected," Sommossa said.

He also added that the number of illegal immigrants who are unable to find a job in Italy and instead become part of criminal structures has been constantly growing.

 

The migration crisis has led to the rising popularity of right-wing parties, something that was especially evident during the parliamentary elections held on March 4. The election resulted in the Five Star Movement (M5S) securing over 32 percent of the vote.

Earlier it was reported that the M5S and another right-wing party, the Italian Lega, are engaged in talks on forming a governing formation and completed work on a joint program that provides for a toughening of migration regulations, among other things.The move comes after Italy has been struggling to accommodate hundreds of thousands of migrants arriving in the country since 2015. Hundreds of thousands of asylum seekers have arrived to the EU, including by sea, with Italy and Greece bearing the brunt of the burden of the crisis.

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