EB-5 Wait-Times for Vietnamese, Indians Now 6+ Years as Retrogression No Longer Limited to China

Chinese applicants are no longer the only group suffering under the EB-5 program’s intractable retrogression nightmare; Indian and Vietnamese investors applying today can expect to wait 5.7 and 7.2 years, respectively, to get their EB-5 visas approved, shows an analysis by Mr. Charles Oppenheim, Chief of the Department of State’s Immigrant Visa Control & Reporting Division.

EB-5 Insights reports that, during a recent EB-5 industry forum, Oppenheim shared the following wait-time estimates for applicants that filed their i-526 forms – the initial petition to obtain a conditional visa – by the end of October:

China Mainland: 14 years
Vietnam: 7.2 years
India: 5.7 years
South Korea: 2.2 years*
Taiwan: 1.7 years*
Brazil: 1.5 years*

*As the current USCIS processing time for an I-526 is roughly two (2) years, there is no effective wait time between I-526 approval and visa availability.

Read also: 450 Chinese EB-5 Investors Sue US Govt. Over 15 Year Wait Times

Furthermore, for the first time in history, Chinese investors no longer make up an absolute majority of EB-5 visa recipients; in fiscal year 2018, the USCIS allocated 48% of such visas to mainland Chinese.

Vietnam reached its retrogression threshold – 7.1% of the 10,000 visas available per year – in early 2018, and has already seen its wait-times shoot up as a result. Interest from Indians, the fastest growing applicant group, has shot up from 1.7% of all applications in FY2017 to 6.1% in FY2018, indicating they are virtually certain to enter retrogression territory within months.

In 2020, Vietnam ranked 1st in the Investment Migration Market Eligibility Index.

Christian Henrik Nesheim AdministratorKeymaster

Christian Henrik Nesheim is the founder and editor of Investment Migration Insider, the #1 magazine – online or offline – for residency and citizenship by investment. He is an internationally recognized expert, speaker, documentary producer, and writer on the subject of investment migration, whose work is cited in the Economist, Bloomberg, Fortune, Forbes, Newsweek, and Business Insider. Norwegian by birth, Christian has spent the last 16 years in the United States, China, Spain, and Portugal.

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