US Govt Shutdown May Affect Bulgarian Visa Seekers
The US government’s partial shutdown may affect consular services, causing difficulties to nationals of five EU countries still subject to US visa requirements – including Bulgaria.
The citizens of 23 out of EU’s 28 member states do not need to acquire a US visa to visit the country, but are required to get an electronic authorisation. The citizens of Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Romania and Poland still require US visas, EurActiv has reminded.
The State Department could continue processing foreign applications for visas and US applications for passports, since fees are collected to finance those services. Embassies and consulates overseas would continue to provide services to American citizens.
However, the State Department warned this week that consular operations at home and abroad would only remain open as long as "there are sufficient fees to support operations", NBC reported.
Between 20-30,000 applications for visas went unprocessed each of the 27 days the government was halted in the mid-90s, according to the Congressional Research Service. Nearly 200,000 US applications for passports went unprocessed, causing millions of dollars in losses for US tourism industries and airlines, according to the report.
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