Small increase for Asia in December VB explained


OK – so I am being asked about why Asia has had such a small increase in the December visa bulletin (from 3200 to 3250).

You would have to have had your head under a rock to not notice that this year has seen extensive delays due to the introduction of the DS260. I explained this in a blog post about the delay in 2NL which you can read if you don’t know what has happened.

OK – so imagine the backlog of interviews that has built up around the world. Lots of interviews that should have taken place in October, November and December are now going to scheduled in January or perhaps even later.

The backlog would be no issue in Europe because the DV population is pretty spread out among all the countries. So – each EU embassy could increase capacity a bit and the backlog could be cleared pretty easily. The same can be said for all other regions except Asia.


Why is Asia different?

Well if you have read my post about the way the draw process works  you will know that some countries have massive number of entries in comparison to the region. Those countries are limited during the draw which means they can have very high density of winners in the early numbers. In DV2014 for example Iran and Nepal had 40% each of the early numbers (until they were cut off). So – for every 1000 interviews, 400 would be Iranian and 400 would be from Nepal. The other 200 would be in the rest of Asia.

Iranian selectees are not processed in Iran obviously, most Iranians are processed in 3 neighboring countries. Nepal however has to process almost all its DV selectees in one embassy – Kathmandu. Nepal is therefore the capacity limitation for all of Asia. If Kathmandu cannot increase capacity to deal with the backlog, they have no choice but to limit the Vis Bulletin progress for ALL of Asia.


In terms of numbers Nepal has 5000 selectees (about 25% of all of Asia), but all those 5000 (with family) are concentrated in the first 10000 case numbers. Iran is somewhat similar. I have written about this before, and it is the reason why I say I hope KCC learns a lesson from DV2014 and limits Nepal earlier otherwise Asia processing cannot reach its full potential.