Depending on the class of US visa you are applying for, the cost to applicants will range between $160, $190 and $265. And these are for nonimmigrant visas only.
The US consulate in Lagos and the embassy in Abuja attend to over 800 applications daily between them. There is no available record of the number of people they approve their applications, but we know that over 70 percent applicants are usually “second time applicants.”
This means that the US makes between US$640,000 (or N230 million) and US$1,060 million (or (N381 million) every week from Nigerians applying for visa to travel to the US.
While I am not going to calculate the cost of tickets and accommodation that the less than 20 percent applicants whose applications are approved contribute towards the US economy to keep US based airlines in business and workers in their jobs, I am, however, going to mention that a return ticket from New York to Australia cost about $400 while a flight between Lagos and New York cost as much as US$2000 and in the worse planes.
In other words, Nigerians have a very strong economic relevance to many US businesses. It is not out of place to submit that our movements sustain US airlines flying to so many other destinations at cheap rate.
Ever wondered why British Airways, BA flights continue to fly between Lagos and Abuja even when BA pilots are on strike in the rest of the world? I will tell you…(ok, think am yourself).
The Lagos/Abuja to London route is the most expensive in the world; that route is the money making machine that sustains all BA operations. How could I pay £350 to fly to New York on a 7 hours flight from London and then have to pay £1500 to fly from London to Lagos for the same 7 hours?
My thoughts are that US President, Mr Trump is a business man. If you check out how much US Department of State claim they spend to fund their foreign interests in the whole of Africa, you will see that the funds are too small compared to how much they generate with the Visa Scam in Nigeria.
Otherwise, responsible countries don’t collect visa fees for visas they didn’t grant; Germany for example, will only ask you to pay for the visa and Administrative fees if your application is successful; the US collects the fees in advance and there is no refund.
*Let me quickly conclude that the US and Mr Trump will ultimately not include Nigerians on that list; at worse, they will include a very restricted number of people from certain sections of the Nigerian society. But not because they respect Nigeria or Nigerians but because they understand the economic power we have. And until Nigerians understand the economic power that 200 million people can pull, we will continue to face insults and abuses from the rest of the world.