With its commitment to facilitating travel to the United States as part of broader “Jobs Diplomacy,” the United States of America today congratulated Brand USA for its efforts as part of the President’s tourism initiative to support economic growth and job creation.
The State Department supports Brand USA, a public-private partnership with the mission of promoting increased international travel to the United States, and applauds the unveiling of its initial marketing campaign.
According to the US State Department, international visitors contributed to the employment of more than one million American workers by spending $152 billion on U.S. travel- and tourism-related goods and services in 2011.
Every additional 65 international visitors to the United States generate enough revenue to support an additional travel- and tourism-related job.
While the majority of visitors utilize the Visa Waiver Program to enter the United States, the State Department is committed to facilitating travel for the approximately 35 percent of international travelers who require visas.
The United States is meeting visa demand worldwide.
Consular officers at USembassies and consulates are working tirelessly to protect our borders, keep visa wait times short, and streamline the process for visa applicants, particularly in fast-growing markets like China, Brazil, and Mexico that offer exceptional growth opportunities.
In anticipation of the future growth in these new markets, the United States is deploying additional staff, expanding existing operations, and opening new consulates.
The United States is alsoo looking at other ways it can work with Brand USA to promote economic growth and job creation.
The United States seeks to leverage its presence overseas and its public diplomacy to welcome more visitors to America’s great destinations.
The United States will also work closely with industry, Brand USA, and colleagues across the nation to send a positive message to foreign visitors that the United States is an attractive travel destination.
The State Department believes visas for legitimate travelers are an important tool to help accelerate America’s economic revival.
On November 2011, the United States reported that skyrocketing visa demand in China and Brazil is a good news story.
The United States has issued 35 percent more visas in China in 2011 and 44 percent more in Brazil.
In 2010, an unprecedented rise in visa demand increased among emerging economies such as China and Brazil. In 2011, US highly trained corps of consular officers issued more than 7.5 million visas around the world which represents a 17 percent increase over Fiscal Year 2010.
US reports that the world for visas changed on 9/11. Security is U.S. primary focus while it is on the frontlines protecting America’s borders.
Worldwide travel dropped immediately following 9/11, but since 2005, they have seen visa issuances rise 42 percent.
When it comes to visas though, the U.S. job is to protect America’s borders while putting out the welcome mat for visitors to stay in their hotels, to eat in their restaurants, buy American products, and enjoy all the wonders of our great country.
U.S. goal is to expand its capacity to adjudicate more than 2.2 million visas in China and 1.8 million visas in Brazil by 2013.
The Department of State is keeping pace with growing demand for visas, and continues to dedicate more personnel and resources to visa adjudication, focusing on embassies and consulates with the greatest resource needs. Specifically, we are committed to increasing visa adjudications by one-third in FY 2012 in both China and Brazil, two countries where we have seen the greatest increase in visa demand.
The Department is adding 98 visa adjudicators this year and next in China and Brazil. A number of these new adjudicators are being hired through a pilot program that targets applicants who already speak Mandarin or Portuguese. We expect the first group of these special hires to arrive at posts in China and Brazil in the spring of 2012. A second group will follow in summer 2012.