Nauru accedes to market forces
The tiny island-nation “has told Australia it will have to pay a world record visa charge of more than $1.2 million a year” to keep refugee, Mohammed Sagar, in detention there. This follows Nauru’s recent announcement of a new system of visa charges for refugees detained on the island on Australia’s behalf. Charges for seven Burmese asylum seekers who arrived in Nauru last month are $2000 each for the first 90 days, increasing by $500 every subsequent 30 days.
In Mr Sagar’s case, “Nauru Foreign Minister David Adeang says the new visa fee is intended to encourage the Federal Government to find a solution for Mohammed Sagar, 30, who was rescued during the ‘children overboard’ episode five years ago next Tuesday.” Mr Adeang is adamant that the exhorbitant charges in Mr Sagar’s case are being levied “for humanitarian reasons”.
It’s really quite astounding, when one thinks about it, to see the pointy end of market forces deployed so purposefully. And apparently altruistically.
Unfortunately for Australian ‘policy makers’, there just aren’t that many failed-states in the region that can accommodate Australian policy requirements in quite the way that Nauru is willing and able to do. It’s a detainers’ market out there.