When requesting a green card from outside the United States, immigrants must visit the closest consulate for an interview before their application can be granted. However, according to a Cato Institute analysis, the United States does not process immigration visas in 67 nations. Therefore, many people are required to go through expensive and time-consuming travel in order to even be able to attend a consular interview.
Approximately 720 million people reside in nations that do not handle immigration visas due to the lack of U.S. consulates or embassies. These nations include Mozambique, Norway, Iraq, and Venezuela. Although 400,000 visas from the United States were granted to citizens of these nations in the last ten years, if it was not for this considerable obstacle, the U.S. would have been able to issue many more. In order to attend an interview, candidates must travel 669 kilometers on average. Sometimes, the distance is considerably wider. For instance, Eritrean citizens who are applying for immigrant visas must travel 1,158 kilometers to Kenya for their interviews.
The United States lacks an embassy or consulate in twenty-four nations. The State of Palestine and North Korea are the two biggest of this group. The United States has shuttered its consulates permanently in twelve other nations, including Iran, Ukraine, and Russia. Although there are consulates in another twenty-eight nations, they solely deal with nonimmigrant visas.