US assures India that visa fee hike concerns would be looked into

USA

The US on 30 August assured India that it would look into visa fee hike concerns after the latter asked for ‘just and non-discriminatory’ solution to the issue.

The US said that the visa fee hike was not just restricted to Indian professionals, but was a part of its across-the-board change in policy.

Meanwhile, Sushma Swaraj, Indian External Affairs Minister, was quoted by the Press Trust of India as saying that she had sought the support of John Kerry, US Secretary of State, for settling pending matters relating to totalisation and the increase in the fee for H1B and L1 visa that could affect interactions between people of both the countries. This is a cornerstone of bilateral relations, she added.

Penny Pritzker, US Commerce Secretary, referring to data, said Indians were the main beneficiaries of US visas as they were issued 69 percent and 30 percent of all H1B and L1 visas, respectively.

She stated this at the joint conference where Kerry, Swaraj and Nirmala Sitharaman, Commerce and Industry Minister, were also present. Though visa fee hike increases were not applicable only to Indian citizens, Pritzker said that owing to the concerns that the Indian industry had raised, she said she was committed to Minister Sitharaman to relook and report back. Sitharaman she had raised the visa issue during the 2nd Indo-US Strategic and Commercial Dialogue (S&CD) and also in the CEO Forum. She said that Secretary Pritzker took the initiative to come forward and spend some time with industry honchos and said that she would definitely look into this issue. If you want to migrate to the US, approach one of Y-Axis’s offices at nineteen locations in the major cities of India to get guidance and assistance to file for a visa of any category.

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