“The only reason why it is closing is that many of the forms that are filed with US CIS are online. There’s really no need to have overseas presence,” Kim said in an interview on “The Chiefs” aired on Cignal TV’s One News on Friday night.
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US to continue processing immigrant visa applications – envoy
Janvic Mateo (The Philippine Star) - June 17, 2019 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — United States Ambassador Sung Kim has assured Filipinos that the US government would continue to process immigrant visa applications despite the closure of the local office of the US Citizenship and Immigration Services (CIS) in Manila.

“The only reason why it is closing is that many of the forms that are filed with US CIS are online. There’s really no need to have overseas presence,” Kim said in an interview on “The Chiefs” aired on Cignal TV’s One News on Friday night.

“US CIS office closing is purely for administrative reasons,” he added.

Kim said the closure of the office did not in any way affect the processing of immigrant visa applications for Filipino citizens.

“There’s been no change in how we process immigrant visas. The US embassy in Manila continues to be one of the three busiest visa issuance offices in terms of immigrant and non-immigrant visas. I don’t expect that to change at all,” he said.

The ambassador noted the US government’s efforts to improve the screening process for those applying for immigrant and non-immigrant visas to ensure national security.

Kim said there are discussions on the US immigration system, citing debates on shifting to merit-based rather than family-based chain migration.

“The discussion in the US is if it is time for us to rebalance things. Of course, we will continue to have family reunion cases, but do we want to increase the numbers for merit-based immigration? I think that’s a legitimate debate,” he said.

“But nothing has been decided,” he added.

Kim said the US Congress would have to take action on the proposal. 

SUNG KIM US CITIZENSHIP AND IMMIGRATION SERVICES
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