The United States Government has removed all visa reciprocity fees for Nigerians applying for United States visas with effect from December 3, 2020.
The Spokesperson, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ferdinand Nwonye, disclosed the development in a statement issued in Abuja.
Nwonye said: “The Ministry of Foreign Affairs wishes to inform that the United States Government has removed all visa reciprocity fees for Nigerian citizens seeking visas to the United States.”
Recall that the United States Government had in August 2019, embarked on reciprocity fees for Nigerians after the Federal Government failed to honour its request to cancel fees charged to its citizens for certain visa categories.
The United States said the decision was taken after 18 months of engagement with the Nigerian Government beginning from early 2018 that the cost for certain visa categories be changed.
The United States Diplomatic Mission to Nigeria, had said 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.
“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,” the United States said in 2019.
Nwonye further said the positive development was in line with the removal of excess visa application, processing and biometric fees for United States citizens applying for Nigerian visas by the Nigerian Government.
“The United States Government has therefore eliminated reciprocity fees for Nigerian citizens with effect from December 3, 2020.
“Prospective Nigerian travellers to the United States are hereby advised to visit: www. travel state.gov for details,” the government further said.