Immigrant and nonimmigrant visa issuance increased dramatically in the 2022 fiscal year, according to the State Department’s “Report of the Visa Office 2022.”

The data shows that in FY 2022:

  • Global immigrant visa issuance increased 73% to 493,448.
  • Global nonimmigrant visa issuance increased 144% to 6,815,120.

FY 2022 immigrant visa issuance was consistent with pre-pandemic levels; nonimmigrant visa issuance remained lower than pre-pandemic rates despite the increase.

Fiscal Year Immigrant Visas Issued Globally
2018 533,557
2019 462,422
2020 240,526
2021 285,069
2022 493,448


Fiscal Year Nonimmigrant Visas Issued Globally
2018 9,028,026
2019 8,742,068
2020 4,013,210
2021 2,792,083
2022 6,815,120

Monthly immigrant and nonimmigrant visa data shows that visa issuance continued at a high level in the first two months of FY 2023.

Month Immigrant Visas Issued Globally Nonimmigrant Visas Issued Globally
October 2022 44,750 704,734
November 2022 45,577 739,257

BAL Analysis: The COVID-19 pandemic and related staffing and funding issues dramatically slowed visa issuance globally; however, the recent data shows that visa processing levels have largely been restored. Some posts are still grappling with significant backlogs, including posts in India, where officials recently opened up Saturday interview slots for some first-time visitor visa applicants. BAL will continue to monitor efforts to address visa and appointment wait times abroad. Employers and employees should continue to consult their BAL professional before planning international travel.

This alert has been provided by the BAL U.S. Practice Group. For additional information, please contact

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