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Vietnamese Boat People

Volume 229: debated on Friday 23 July 1993

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To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what is the sum of money owed to the Hong Kong Government, and by whom, for the cost of keeping the Vietnamese boat people.

The office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) currently owes the Hong Kong Government approximately 90 million United States dollars for the care and maintenance of refugees in the territory.

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs when it is expected that all remaining Vietnamese boat people at present being held in detention in Hong Kong will have been repatriated to Vietnam.

If the 1993 rates of voluntary repatriation and refugee resettlement can be maintained, and there are no more new arrivals, the Hong Kong camps could be empty within three years.

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs how many Vietnamese boat people in total had been repatriated to Vietnam from Hong Kong up to 10 July.

As at 1 July (the latest figures available), 29,893 migrants had returned home voluntarily. A further 627 had been returned under the orderly repatriation programme.

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs how many Vietnamese boat people were still being held in detention in Hong Kong as of 10 July.

As at 1 July (the latest figures available), the Hong Kong camp population was as follows:

Number

Refugees2,231
Screened out (after appeal)24,143
Awaiting screening or results14,353
Total40,727