Vice President Biden Highlights Problems with U.S. Visa System

Recent remarks by Vice President Joe Biden highlighted the barriers Chinese citizens face with the U.S. visa system, stating they were "not in our interest" and that the U.S. should "make it easier for travel to the United States," the U.S. Travel Association reports. 

The vice president's comments echo calls by the U.S. Travel Association and other business and travel leaders to reform the U.S. visa system, which would result in additional business and leisure travelers to the U.S. and create more than one million U.S. jobs.

U.S Travel said that at an August 19 U.S.-China Business Roundtable attended with Chinese Vice President Xi, Biden said, "I would also like to point out that we've made much progress, but there are some real and perceived barriers that exist in both countries that have to be dealt with. I think it's legitimate for Chinese business persons and government officials to point to the dilemma with the American visa process, which I very much want to work on with the [Chinese] vice president."

Additionally, in remarks at Sichuan University on August 21, U.S. Travel reported that Biden said, "Although the United States and China are working hard to get this right, we still face obstacles of doing business in each other's countries. That's why I acknowledged on this trip the United States should undertake to make it easier for Chinese business people to obtain visas to travel to the United States. It takes much too long for that to happen. That's not in our interest."

The U.S. Travel Association recently formed a coalition to advance reforms advocated in its recent report on the U.S. visa system. The Discover America Partnership, a diverse group of business and travel organizations, this week sent letters to the White House, and House and Senate leaders, advocating for visa reform to be included in any job creation legislation. 

Reforming the U.S. visa system could add 1.3 million U.S. jobs by 2020 and produce $859 billion in cumulative additional economic output, U.S. Travel says.

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