US extends B-1 and B-2 visa validity for Colombians to 10 years

Wed, 2012-04-18 12:01 PM
The US State Department announced on 15 April that they are increasing the validity of B-1 and B-2 visit visas for Colombians traveling on a temporary basis to the US from five years to ten years. Under these new rules, most Colombian applicants who qualify for a B-1 or B-2 non-immigrant visa will be issued a 120-month, multiple-entry visa.

The department said that the extension of the B-1 and B-2 visa validity is part of their ongoing effort to expand their partnership between the US and Colombia and increase tourism. The move follows the passage of the U.S.-Colombia Trade Promotion Agreement, which is expected to increase investment between the two countries. The department added that the growing Colombian economy will lead to more US travel for education and training, tourism, and economic activities.

Around 577,000 Colombians visit the US annually, according to the Department of Homeland Security. B-1 and B-2 visa applicants will still be subject to the same standards of eligibility for a US visa as before the extension of the visa validity. In order to qualify for a B-1 and B-2 visa, applicants must demonstrate:
  • Their planned stay in the U.S. is temporary; AND
  • They have sufficient funds to cover all expenses; AND
  • They have strong social and economic ties to their foreign residence and do not intend to abandon it.
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