Oh man. Someone today talked about the DV process being a rollercoaster ride. It certainly is – and this year more than other years.
Today we saw the VB released for June interviews. So – although there are over 5 full months of interviews left, there are now just 3 VBs left. The progress on todays VB was a “mixed bag” – good news for some, awful news for others.
I am extremely busy at work at the moment, so I cannot do much with the data, but thanks to Xarthisius and the people scraping, we ALL have the CEAC data. Everyone can see and analyze the data for themselves by downloading the latest file from here. To exclude “holes” simply filter out the cases with a status of “none”.
I will make a few brief points on each region though.
In Asia, the number for “rest of Asia” is moving fast. Nepal will continue to see some increases at roughly the same pace we have seen. Nepal cases end around 7000, and the Nepal final number will probably be a little under the that (leaving a few highest cases without interviews). That is a pattern we have seen before. Because of the travel ban, the rest of AS has been allowed to move ahead. If the travel ban stays in place, it is possible for the rest of Asia to go current. However, that would change if the ban is removed. The appeal is being heard by the Supreme Court at the end of April.
For Africa the VB progress was slightly lower than I expected. I honestly don’t know whether the current pace is sufficient to reach the quota. In reality, the enhanced security measures this year and to some extend the travel ban have meant there are a lot of visas remaining before the quota (21600) is met, since there are only about 8000 visas issued at this point. However, The pace of issuances in the latter half of the year is always higher for AF region, especially as AP cases are concluded alongside issuances from normal processing. So – we have to wait and see where the final numbers will fall. I am NOT going to try to predict that number.
Oceania is tracking more or less exactly as expected and is heading for the 1450/1500 final number.
South America had a good month – but there is not much reason to believe pace will increase any faster than the 175 we saw this month. So – that would get us to about 1700 ish.
For Europe there is obviously a big disappointment coming for many people. I was sure we were going to see numbers in the 30’s. I really don’t think that will happen now. We have been used to EU doing very well, and I was hopeful this year would see a good high number. However, I am more and more certain that we are going to see a shockingly low VB number. Why? Well we can look at two things to estimate remaining progress. The month to month pace (based on embassy capacity etc), and the progress toward the quota (18300).
First, the pace. KCC reduced the pace in terms of the number of “real” case numbers since March. The VBs for April, May and now June interviews have only made 1070 to 1200 new real cases current. By the time we take response rate into account that means they are setting interviews for ~600 to ~750 new cases each month (plus another 150 to 200 from “backlog” cases each month.
So how about the quota? From that pace we would only expect to see around 1200 to 1500 visas issued each month (approximately!). However, that will probably get close to the quota even at that pace, because there are 10500 visas issued already leaving about 7500 to 8000 visas left (and 5.5 months of processing). So – the pace seems to suggest that KCC believe they are on track to meet the quota with existing pace (similar to what we saw in the last 3 VBs).
So – at the current density (which remains static until high 30’s) we could see VB increases of around 2500 a month (give or take a couple of hundred). That would get us to about 28000 or even a little less. That could happen. We would need to see increases of more than 3000 to get over 30000 – but there is not much evidence to hint at that increase in pace. So – I think a final number in the high 20’s is very likely. I have been responding “wait and see” to high cases in the 20’s for around a month now. I was hoping the VB today would dispel the fears. It didn’t.
Again – the data is available for all – please feel free to retain your own hope – I cannot be certain what will happen. Feel free to disagree with me and form your own opinion. Really – all we can do is wait and see how this rollercoaster will end. I fully realize the dreams people have based on this lottery. Best of luck to you all for your own cases – but please do show some sensitivity for the many people who want and deserve this opportunity just as much as you do – and perhaps are behind you in the line.