France to Spend One Billion Euros on Healthcare for Illegal Migrants in 2022

Malian migrant worker Tidjane (R) wearing a protective face mask has his temperature check

The French government has announced that it will be allocating €1 billion for the healthcare of illegal immigrants in its 2022 budget, a figure that has doubled since 2015.

The draft finance law was presented by the government of President Emmanuel Macron on Wednesday and will see €1 billion (£860 million/$1.17 billion) allocated for healthcare for illegals, up from €990 (£850 million/$1.162 billion) in 2021. The budge does not include emergency care.

Minister for Health Olivier Véran stated that over 383,000 migrants benefitted from state medical aid (AME) in 2020. AME includes “common law” support that covers 100 per cent of medical and hospital expenses for migrants living in France for at least three months, Sud Ouest reports. The newspaper noted the budget for next year is double that of 2015.

The AME was created in 2000 and has been criticised by many on the right of the political spectrum in the past, according to the newspaper Le Figaro, but the government has argued that the spending mitigates health risks to the general public.

In May, conservative Les Républicains (LR) MP Véronique Louwagie criticised the AME and said it should only cover urgent care, saying: “The level of care offered in France to foreigners in an irregular situation is very generous, and even too generous.”

Minister Véran replied to the criticism by claiming that most of those receiving the AME funds were in “situations of distress” and claimed that he did not think migrants were crossing the Mediterranean Sea illegally in makeshift boats for lower diabetes care costs.

French taxpayers have been paying vast sums of money for illegal immigrants for years. A 2019 report noted that underage migrants alone cost the French state €2 billion (£1.72 billion/$2.35 billion).

The report stated that the estimated 41,000 underage migrants in France cost an average of €50,000 (£42,942/$58,696) each per year. It also noted that around 95 per cent of the migrants were male.

In May 2020, another report from the Court of Auditors stated that France spent €6.6 billion (£5.67 billion/£7.75 billion) on immigration in 2019.

Follow Chris Tomlinson on Twitter at @TomlinsonCJ or email at ctomlinson(at)


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