Pakistan has suffered a fall of up to 40 percent in the number of US visas granted to its citizens since President Donald Trump was sworn into office in January. This is despite the nation not being one of the countries on Trump’s list of travel bans.
The number of non-immigrant US visas granted to Indians increased by 28 percent during March and April 2017, compared to the previous year’s monthly average, as shown by the official monthly data. Non-immigrant US visas given to Pakistanis fell by 40 percent during March and April, in comparison to the monthly average of 2016, according to a media report in Pakistan, which quoted US State Department data.
Under the new Trump administration, 3973 and 3925 US visas were issued to Pakistanis in March and April 2017 respectively. Last year, the Obama administration issued Pakistanis a total of 78,637 non-immigrant US visas, with an average monthly rate of 6553, which is 40 percent higher than the average current rate. Before March 2017, monthly breakdowns of US visas were not issued by the State Department, with only annual figures available.
A State Department spokesperson said that the demand for US visas is cyclical, changing throughout the year due to various factors at both international and local levels and that the number of US visas issued tends to go up during holiday periods in both summer and winter.