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EIG Dispatch | October 21, 2016

October 24, 2016

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Spanish Embassy Begins Processing Visa Applications in India and Nepal
  • Turkish Embassy to Stop Visitor Visa Processing in Qatar
  • Australia Reduces Period of Authorized Stay of 457 Visa
  • New Requirement for Chinese Nationals Visiting U.S.

Spanish Embassy Begins Processing Visa Applications in India and Nepal

Effective immediately, VFS Global, an outsourcing company that handles visa processing for certain countries, will no longer be processing Spanish visa applications in Nepal and India. Instead, applicants in those countries seeking Spanish visas must apply at the Consulate General in Mumbai or at the Embassy of Spain in New Delhi.

Due to this significant change, applicants are warned that there will likely be delays in the visa processing times.  Employers should take into account possible delays when determining start dates for employment/assignments in Spain


Turkish Embassy to Stop Visitor Visa Processing in Qatar

Beginning November 1, 2016, the Turkish Embassy in Qatar will cease processing visitor visas.  Applicants will be required to submit their applications to VFS Global in Al Gharafa or Jaidah Square. In addition to visa fees, applicants will be charged a VFS Global service fee of QR110.

According to the Turkish Ambassador to Qatar, the change in policy is a result of the recent large increase in applications.  Due to the current volume, the Embassy is not able to adequately process all of the visa applications it receives.


Australia Reduces Period of Authorized Stay of 457 Visa

Starting November 19, 2016, 457 Subclass Visa Holders will only be allowed to remain in Australia for 60 days after their employment ends. Currently, the period of authorized stay is 90 days. The new law will apply to new Subclass 457 visas granted on or after November 19.

In light of a new regulation, employers sponsoring 457 visas on or after November 19 should account for the reduction in the authorized stay period following the job end date.


New Requirement for Chinese Nationals Visiting U.S.

Effective November 29, 2016, the U.S. Customs and Border Protection will require Chinese nationals  holding 10-year visitor (B-1/B-2, B-1, or B-2) visas to enroll in the new Electronic Visa Update System (EVUS) before traveling to the United States.

Chinese nationals must renew their enrollment every two years or when their passport expires. The new changes apply to new visa applicants and current visa holders, and an enrollment fee of $8 will be charged. While the system is not yet accepting enrollments, Chinese nationals traveling to the U.S. on or after November 29 must complete the EVUS enrollment requirement.

Please see here for more information about EVUS: https://www.cbp.gov/travel/international-visitors/electronic-visa-update-system-evus/frequently-asked-questions