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Cablegate: Surabaya B1/B2 Visa Validation Study

VZCZCXRO4679
RR RUEHJS
DE RUEHJS #0123 3580206
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 240206Z DEC 09
FM AMCONSUL SURABAYA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 0509
INFO RUEHJA/AMEMBASSY JAKARTA 0499
RUEHJS/AMCONSUL SURABAYA 0522
RHMFIUU/DHS IP BOMBING PREVENTION WASH DC

UNCLAS SURABAYA 000123

SIPDIS

DEPARTMENT FOR CA/FPP AND VO/KCC
DEPARTMENT FOR EAP/MTS AND CA/EX

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: CVIS CMGT KFRD ID
SUBJECT: SURABAYA B1/B2 VISA VALIDATION STUDY

REF: A) 09 SURABAYA 009; B) 08 SURABAYA 0103

1. Summary: The Consular Section of U.S. Consulate General
Surabaya recently conducted a validation study of B1/B2 visa
issuances for the six month period between December 1, 2007 and
May 31, 2008. Ninety eight percent of these recipients had
either not yet traveled or properly returned to Indonesia. End
Summary.

Methodology
------------------
2. The validation study included all Indonesian B1/B2 visa
recipients from December 1, 2007 to May 31, 2008, a total of
1,465 visas. Recipients who planned to travel within six months
of visa issuance should have returned to Indonesia before
electronic departure records were reviewed in September/October
2009. CA/FPP reviewed Department of Homeland Security (DHS)
Arrival-Departure Information System (ADIS) and Automated
Targeting System (ATS) departure records, and we telephoned
recipients for whom U.S. departure records were unavailable. In
most cases either ADIS or ATS records provided the necessary
data to confirm departure. In a few cases, our phone calls
confirmed return to Indonesia when no ADIS or ATS departure
records were available. We then reviewed the Consular
Consolidated Database (CCD) records of all visa recipients who
either overstayed (12) or adjusted status (7) in the U.S.
Finally, we were left with 7 inconclusive/suspected overstay
cases in which no departure records existed and phone calls were
unsuccessful in determining their current whereabouts.

Results
---------
3. Table of Findings:

Non-Return: 2 percent (26 total)
Confirmed Overstay: 0.8 percent (12 total)
Suspected Overstay: 0.5 percent (7 total)
Adjustment of Status: 0.5 percent (7 total)
Confirmed Return: 73 percent (1,077 total)
Never Traveled: 25 percent (362 total)
Total Sample: 100 percent (1,465 total)

Analysis
----------
4. Our validation study showed a non-return rate of 2 percent.
Among the 12 confirmed overstayers, 50 percent were female and
50 percent were male. Additionally, 42 percent of the 12
confirmed overstayers were single and 58 percent were married.
The most prominent age group among the 12 confirmed overstayers
were applicants more than 40 years of age, accounting for 66
percent of overstays. Among the total of 12 confirmed
overstayers, 25 percent had previously traveled to the United
States.

Comparison with Previous Validation Study
--------------------------------------------- -----
5. Our previous validation study (Ref B) sampled 584 B1/B2
visas issued from December 1, 2006 to May 31, 2007. It yielded
a 5 percent confirmed non-return rate, compared with this
study's 2 percent non-return rate. The adjusted refusal rate
for B1/B2 visas in Surabaya during the most recent validation
study period (December 1, 2007 - May 31, 2008) was 41.4 percent
compared to an adjusted refusal rate of 35.1 percent during the
previous validation study period.

Conclusion
---------------
6. Surabaya's 2009 non-return rate of 2 percent is well under
the 2011 Mission Strategic Plan (MSP) target B1/B2 visa
non-return rate of 5 percent. The results indicate that
Surabaya's B1/B2 visa issuances during the study period were
quality issuances. However, a lack of any visa-related content
on the Consulate's web site prior to August 2008 was likely a
contributing factor to some applicants' inability to demonstrate
their visa qualifications. In August 2008, post created visa
information content for a new web site that has resulted in a
better informed and better prepared pool of visa applicants.
Post also reviewed and adjusted is adjudication standards
following the previous validation study. As a result of these
changes, the adjusted B1/B2 refusal rate has declined during the
2009 calendar year to 27 percent.

MOBLEY

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