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Global 21 fourth quarter 2015

Arena Immigration From US posting to permanent residency Immigration to the USA for representatives and employees of foreign national governments is now more straightforward than ever, but employees of state-level governments face more limited options William Diaz A posting to the USA can have obvious appeal to those working in the diplomatic service or for international organisations like the United Nations. While long-term residence visas for the USA are notoriously hard to come by, representatives of foreign governments relocating to the USA are well catered for, as are their families. For government officials, diplomats and staff of international organisations, US travel may range from a single meeting to longterm residency or even eventual citizenship. Regardless of one’s position in a foreign government or international organisation, the USA generally requires the proper visa for aliens to enter temporarily or reside for the long term. With adequate planning, those entering on official business encounter an accommodating and hospitable system that confers some notable benefits, especially with regard to the transfer of family and personal employees. Diplomats, foreign officials and employees of national governments entering the USA on official business typically require an A-1 or A-2 visa. However, heads of state and heads of government are eligible for the A-1 visa, even if visiting in an unofficial capacity. While the A-1 visa is available to heads of state or government, as well as representatives entering the USA to serve at an embassy or consulate, it also covers European Union and African Union delegation members. In contrast, the A-2 visa is issued to employees of foreign governmental organisations, including embassy and consular staff, foreign military personnel (subject to various requirements), and the staff of European Union and African Union delegations. It is important to note that representatives of foreign local, state or provincial governments encounter very limited US visa options. The visa category open to these individuals is the general B-1 © David Carillet / Shutterstock.com four 40 l www.global -br ief ing.org th quar ter 2015 global


Global 21 fourth quarter 2015
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