Remarks
Hillary Rodham Clinton
Secretary of State
Washington, DC
January 19, 2012


Over the last year, the Department of State has been committed to improving the visa process, decreasing interview wait times in key tourism markets such as Brazil and China and increasing the number of visas we issue – without compromising border security.

We are excited to take these efforts even further in support of the President’s travel and tourism initiatives, opening the door to new jobs and exports. More international visitors to America means more revenue for our cities and states, and we are making it easier for tourists from other countries to experience all that America has to offer.

Demand for visas has increased dramatically in recent years, so this administration has made it a priority to increase our capacity while maintaining our strict security standards. By extending interview hours, adding Saturday appointments, hiring additional staff, and opening new facilities, we have reduced visa wait times in countries around the world.

With today’s announcement, our consular officers will now be able to waive interview requirements on a case-by-case basis for many tourists and business travelers who have already spent billions of dollars in the United States. This will make it easier for these visitors to return, stay in our hotels, eat in our restaurants, buy American products and enjoy all that America has to offer.

The Department of State plays a significant role in supporting both our economic security and border security. This update to our visa requirements will encourage greater investment in the United States, helping to create jobs and power American growth without compromising the safety and security of the American people.



PRN: 2012/084

[This is a mobile copy of New Visa Guidelines]