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We want more Indians to visit America: US Envoy

Reflecting the growing ties between the two countries, US hopes to increase issue of visas to people from India this year, a senior diplomat said on Tuesday.

india Updated: Sep 07, 2011 19:14 IST

Reflecting the growing ties between the two countries, US hopes to increase issue of visas to people from India this year, a senior diplomat said on Tuesday.

"We want more Indian citizens visiting United States and vice-versa. In 2010, we adjudicated about 600,000 applications in India, which is an incredible statistic..," newly appointed US Consul General Jennifer H McIntyre said.

This included business visas, tourist visas. "..We do have issued tremendous amount of technical H1B business visas."

Replying to a question, she said there was a 22 % increase in visa applications last year and over one lakh Indian students were studying in US. "We want to see more."

She said it was a priority for her to increase the number of Indian citizens visiting United States' and vice-versa.

McIntyre said 10 % of all US non-immigrant visa applications come from India. In 2010, the Consulate in Chennai issued 1,42,565 non-immigrant visas, the most among the five consular sections in the country.

Asked whether there would be a dip in the number of H1B visas issued by United States, she replied in the negative saying India accounts for 65 % of H1B visas issued worldwide."It is increasing," she said without elaborating.

On her agenda for the next three years, she said her focus would be on strengthening the Indo-US relations besides on education and increasing business opportunities.

She said the Foreign Commercial Services would host an educational mission in October here in which a lot of American universities and colleges would participate.