The expenses of the State Secretariat for Migration (SEM) are normally determined by the number of asylum applications, the protection rate and the number of asylum seekers already present in Switzerland. In 2022, however, the decisive parameter was the number of people from Ukraine seeking protection. In particular because of the war and resulting migration movements to Switzerland, SEM recorded additional expenses of just over CHF 1 billion compared to 2021.
In 2022, SEM's total expenditure was CHF 2.6 billion. This includes compensatory payments of CHF 702 million that went to the cantons for providing social assistance to persons with Protection Status 'S'; this was recorded as extraordinary transactions.
The largest part of the expenditure in 2022 was in the transfer area: at CHF 1.4 billion, it accounts for 54% of the total budget. This is mainly due to compensation payments that were made to the cantons for costs related in particular to the reception and care of asylum seekers, temporarily admitted persons and refugees. This also includes costs relating to integration measures, removal order enforcement, return assistance and international migration cooperation. Compared to the previous year, there were more asylum seekers, temporarily admitted persons and refugees under the responsibility of the federal government who were dependent on social assistance. This is why costs in this area have gone up.
A further 7% of total expenditure is accounted for by payroll (CHF 190 million). This expenditure item relates to staff salaries, including all social security contributions, as well as other personnel expenses for continuing education and training.
The remaining 12% was incurred for operations and capital expenditure. This includes, in particular, the operating expenses of the federal asylum centres, IT, consulting and other operating expenses, as well as capital expenditure (CHF 302 million).
SEM expenditure trends – only major expenditures
State financial statements for 2020 - 2022, estimate for 2023 (in CHF million)
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Bericht über die Prüfung des Jahresabschlusses (PDF, 783 kB, 30.05.2022)
Revision der Jahresrechnung 2020 Staatssekretariat für Migration (SEM)
Last modification 02.06.2023