Almost 2,000 asylum seekers have been granted permission to work in Ireland while they await a decision on their asylum application.

The figure is contained in a report by Ombudsman Peter Tyndall, which has compiled all complaints received from people living in direct provision accommodation.

Of the 2,662 people who applied for permission to work, 1,845 were granted.

In the report, Mr Tyndall noted that the right to work for asylum seekers has had a positive impact for many people living in direct provision accommodation centres, with an improved mood in many of the centres.

The report also noted that 780 applications for permission to work were refused, but that the Office of the Ombudsman had received no complaint in relation to any of these refusals.

However, Mr Tyndall said the increase in the number of people seeking asylum last year has led to pressures on the direct provision system.

He reiterated his view that direct provision is not a suitable long-term system for those waiting for a decision on their asylum application.

Figures previously reported by RTÉ News show there are 6,308 people in Direct Provision in Ireland.

Accommodation centres currently have capacity for 6,192.

The Department of Justice has said it has been using emergency accommodation to house asylum seekers since September 2018, with 381 people are being accommodated in emergency beds.

The Ombudsman's report shows that a total of 148 complaints were received by his office.

The majority of these (32) were in relation to a refusal of requests to transfer to other centres.

There were 20 complaints in relation to facilities at direct provision centres, 14 were lodged over accommodation and 13 were made in relation to a refusal to readmit people to centres.