Saturday, April 1, 2023

US aims to process over 1 million non-immigrant visa applications in India this year; Desis to be 3rd largest foreign visitor to US in 2022 – Usky News

NEW DELHI: The United States has set a target of processing over one million non-immigrant visa application in India this year. Data from the US government shows that just over one million non-immigrant visas were issued to Indians in fiscal years 2017 and 2018. Uncle Sam has taken a number of steps over the past few months to reduce the backlog, which has reduced the interview waiting period for visitor visas from nearly three years last November to two years now – though it’s still a long wait. Meanwhile, the US Department of Commerce on Monday released data that showed Indians were the third largest foreign visitors to the country last year.
A US Embassy spokesperson said: “The US Mission in India has processed over two lakh visa applications at our Embassy and Consulates in India (so far this calendar year) and we are on track to exceed our target of processing 10,000 visa applications. On track to achieve. million nonimmigrant visa applications in 2023. Our goal of processing one million visa applications includes all categories of nonimmigrant visas.
The (US) department projects nearly 9 million nonimmigrant visa applications will be processed in 2022 worldwide. Mission Million is “an India-specific effort to further strengthen the people-to-people ties between our two countries,” the spokesperson said.
With China yet to fully reopen, Indians emerge as biggest globetrotters to obtain maximum visas for several major destinations and in ‘less than two years’ for US visitor visa interview cases Pulling out all the stops to make the cut. The US has taken several steps to reduce visa wait times in India – which last year touched a figure of nearly 1,000 days for visitor visas, B1 (business) and B2 (tourist), interview cases. These included making more applicants eligible for interview exemptions, sending drop box cases overseas for adjudication, and getting temporary staff.
Despite long waits for visas and skyrocketing airfares, Indians are traveling to the US in large numbers. At over 14 lakh, Indians were the third largest overseas visitors in 2022. Total international visitors to the US in 2022 were approximately 51 million – up 128% from 2021, but still 64% of total international visitor arrivals in 2019.
While the top two source markets remain Canada (14 million) and Mexico (12 million), which share a land border with the US, the top foreign markets are the UK (34.2 million) followed by Germany (1.5 million) and then India (1.5 million). 14.5 lakhs). , “New York reported the largest volume of visitor arrivals in 2022 (following) Miami and Los Angeles as the port of entry,” the department said in a statement.


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