Slow Visa Processing Not Our Fault

The long processing time for Thai tourists to be granted a visa to Denmark is not because the Danish Immigration Authorities in Copenhagen now scrutinize all the applications, as opposed to before where more applications were approved “bona fide” by the Embassy without asking Denmark.
“You cannot blame the Danish Immigration Service for Thai tourists having to wait for a long time to get a visa,” says media relations officer Nils Bak of the Danish Immigration Service.
According to the figures which the Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs have reported to the Danish Immigration Service, only 17 applications for a tourist visa were last year referred to the Danish Immigration Service in Copenhagen. The other 430 applications were all processed locally as “bona fide” tourists at the Royal Danish Embassy in Bangkok.
“Bona fide” means that the Embassy has no reason to suspect that the applicant is not a normal tourist or that he or she intends to remain in Denmark after the visa is expired. In bona fide case, some of the documentation usually required may at the discretion of the Embassy not be requested.
Among the 17 applications referred to Copenhagen, only three were rejected.
 “Tourist visas are generally always processed at the Danish embassies within a few days. The embassies only needs to refer cases where they are in doubt to the Danish Imigration Service. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs has produced figures not for Thailand, but for China, that shows that close to 98 percent of all applications are processed locally. This further proves, that in general it does not involve Danish Immigration Service how long time a tourist must wait for their visa,” says Nils Bak.
Although the information about visa applications at the Royal Danish Embassy in Bangkok is scarce and took some time for the Immigration Service to produce, they show a clear distinction between the 447 applications for a tourist visa and the 2,220 applications for a visa to visit friends or relatives in Denmark.
 “In 2007, the Embassy only granted bona fide visa to visit a friend or a relative in Denmark in 460 cases, while the majority of 1.760 applications were referred to the Immigration Service in Copenhagen. Here, 192 applications were rejected,” writes Nils Bak.
“We don’t have the figures for 2008, but we are informed that the situation as seen from the 2007 figures still holds,” he adds.

About Gregers Møller

Editor-in-Chief • ScandAsia Publishing Co., Ltd. • Bangkok, Thailand

View all posts by Gregers Møller

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