Which Are The E1 Visa Countries?

One of the eligibility requirements under the US E-1 visa is that the visa applicants must be a national of a country that has a treaty of commerce and navigation with the US.

Do you have a query about the E1 Visa Countries?>>

This means you must be a national of one of the following E1 visa countries to be able to apply under the Treaty Trader category:

CountryClassificationEffective Date
ArgentinaE-1October 20, 1994
AustraliaE-1December 16, 1991
AustriaE-1May 27, 1931
BelgiumE-1October 3, 1963
BoliviaE-1November 09, 1862
Bosnia and Herzegovina E-1November 15, 1882
BruneiE-1July 11, 1853
CanadaE-1January 1, 1993
ChileE-1January 1, 2004
China (Taiwan) E-1November 30, 1948
ColombiaE-1June 10, 1848
Costa RicaE-1May 26, 1852
Croatia E-1November 15, 1882
DenmarkE-1July 30, 1961
EstoniaE-1May 22, 1926
EthiopiaE-1October 8, 1953
FinlandE-1August 10, 1934
FranceE-1December 21, 1960
GermanyE-1July 14, 1956
GreeceE-1October 13, 1954
HondurasE-1July 19, 1928
IranE-1June 16, 1957
IrelandE-1September 14, 1950
IsraelE-1April 3, 1954
ItalyE-1July 26, 1949
JapanE-1October 30, 1953
JordanE-1December 17, 2001
Korea (South)E-1November 7, 1957
KosovoE-1November 15, 1882
LatviaE-1July 25, 1928
LiberiaE-1November 21, 1939
LuxembourgE-1March 28, 1963
MacedoniaE-1November 15, 1882
MexicoE-1January 1, 1994
Montenegro E-1November 15, 1882
Netherlands E-1December 5, 1957
New ZealandE1June 10, 2019
Norway E-1January 18, 1928
OmanE-1June 11, 1960
PakistanE-1February 12, 1961
ParaguayE-1March 07, 1860
PhilippinesE-1September 6, 1955
PolandE-1August 6, 1994
Serbia E-1November 15,1882
SingaporeE-1January 1, 2004
Slovenia E-1November 15, 1882
Spain E-1April 14, 1903
Suriname E-1February 10, 1963
SwedenE-1February 20, 1992
SwitzerlandE-1November 08, 1855
ThailandE-1June 8, 1968
TogoE-1February 5, 1967
TurkeyE-1February 15, 1933
United KingdomE-1July 03, 1815
YugoslaviaE-1November 15, 1882

What are the E-1 Trader requirements?

Satisfying the nationality requirement is the first of several E1 visa eligibility criteria that you will need to meet and evidence within your E1 petition.

The E1 visa requirements are that:

  • You are a national an E-1 treaty country
  • You carry out substantial trade activity with the US
  • Your principal trade is between the US and your country of nationality

What counts as ‘trade’ and ‘substantial trade’?

The E-1 visa is aimed at individuals seeking to move to the US temporarily to further their existing trade activities within the US market. Under the E-1 visa requirements, ‘trade’ is considered as the existing exchange of goods, services or other items between the US and the E-1 treaty country of the visa applicant.

Trade could also include insurance, banking, tourism and technology.

To qualify as principal trade, the applicant must be able to show that more than half of the E1 company’s international trade is with the US.

For trade to be ‘substantial’, as required under the E1 visa criteria, the activity being relied on for the visa application should relate to a ‘continuous flow of sizable international trade items’. Generally, this should encompass multiple transactions and it is the volume of trade (not the value) and the number of transactions that will be considered under the substantial test, rather than a limited number of higher value transactions.

E-1 visa employees

The E1 classification also allows key employees within the E1 company to apply to come to the US to help further the trade-related activity

To be eligible, the employee has to:

  • Hold the same nationality (ie of an E1 treaty country) as the main E1 visa applicant
  • Qualify as an ‘employee’
  • Hold a role within the E1 company that is of an executive or supervisory nature, or hold special qualifications that make the employee’s skills, knowledge and services essential to the company.

Note that if the E-1 employee’s sponsor is a company, and not an individual, the organization has to be at least 50% owned by individuals in the US who have the nationality of the E1 treaty country.

E-1 visa family members

E1 visa holders can be accompanied by their spouse and dependent children (unmarried and under 21 years of age).

This requires the family members to file a petition each as a dependant of the principal E1 visa holder.

E1 dependents do not need to hold the same nationality as the principal E1 visa holder (unlike E1 employees).

If successful in their application, the period of stay granted to E1 visa dependents is generally the same as that of the principal visa holder. E1 dependents will also be able to apply to extend their stay, where they meet the requirements.

E1 visa spouses can also apply for work authorization while in the US. With an EAD, they will not be limited in the type of work they can take on. This is unlike the principal E1 visa holder and E1 employees, who must work for the E1 company.

Other points to note about the E1 visa

E1 visa holders can stay in the US for up to two years. During this time, they can usually leave and re-enter the US without restriction, provided they are returning to the US to for purposes permitted by and relating to the E-1 category and there are no other concerns by the border officials.

At the two-year period, visa holders will either have to leave the US or apply to maintain lawful status by exending their visa. E1 visa extensions can be granted for up to two years, and there is no limit on the number of times an E1 visa holder can apply to extend their visa, provided they continue to meet the visa requirements. This means E1 visa holders can only stay in the US while they remain active with the qualifying trade activity.

Do you have a question about the E-1 Trader visa? NNU can help! 

The E-1 trader visa offers many advantages for those seeking to grow existing trade activity with the US. The E-1 eligibility criteria are however strict, and the petitioning process is far from straight forward.

As specialists in US immigration, NNU’s London-based attorneys can guide you through the E-1 requirements and application process. Under current US immigration policy, visa applications are facing increasing scrutiny by adjudicators. Taking expert advice will help ensure you compile a robust application and avoid evidentiary or process issues which can result in a delayed or even refused application.

Contact us for guidance on your specific circumstances.

This article does not constitute direct legal advice and is for informational purposes only.

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