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US Embassy retaliates against Nigeria in Visa battle

Effective worldwide on 29 August, Nigerian citizens will be required to pay a visa issuance fee, or reciprocity fee, for all approved applications for non-immigrant visas in B, F, H1B, I, L, and R visa classifications, says the United States government.


The reciprocity fee will be charged in addition to the non-immigrant visa application fee, also known as the MRV fee, which all applicants pay at the time of application.

In a statement issued on Tuesday by the US Embassy in Nigeria said Nigerian citizens whose applications for a non-immigrant visa were denied will not be charged the new reciprocity fee. Both reciprocity and MRV fees are non-refundable, and their amounts vary based on visa classification.

"U.S. law requires U.S. visa fees and validity periods to be based on the treatment afforded to U.S.

citizens by foreign governments, insofar as possible.  Visa issuance fees are implemented under the principle of reciprocity: when a foreign government imposes additional visa fees on U.S. citizens, the United States will impose reciprocal fees on citizens of that country for similar types of visas. 
 
Nationals of a number of countries worldwide are currently required to pay this type of fee after their nonimmigrant visa application is approved," it said.

Explaining further, the embassy noted, "The total cost for a U.S. citizen to obtain a visa to Nigeria is currently higher than the total cost for a Nigerian to obtain a comparable visa to the United States. The new reciprocity fee for Nigerian citizens is meant to eliminate that cost difference."(Saharareporters)

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