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by Matt Alderton | July 01, 2015
Expanding the Visa Waiver Program (VWP) to Brazil would attract nearly 650,000 additional annual visitors to the United States and generate an additional $7.6 billion for the U.S. economy, bringing total international visitation and economic output to more than 3 million and $35.4 billion, respectively, in 2015, according to the U.S. Travel Association, which yesterday issued a statement urging President Barack Obama to discuss VWP expansion -- as well as expansion of the Global Entry Program -- during meetings this week with Brazil President Dilma Rousseff.

The VWP enables international travelers from approved countries to enter the United States without a visa. The Global Entry program, meanwhile, expedites entry for preapproved, low-risk international travelers originating from approved countries.

"The VWP helps keep our country secure while facilitating international travel that adds billions in economic output and supports nearly one million jobs," said U.S. Travel President and CEO Roger Dow. "Brazil represents a crucial travel market, with both strong demand and financial means for international travel. Admitting Brazil to the VWP would generate record-breaking levels of reciprocal travel and positively impact the economy of both countries."

According to U.S. Travel, countries participating in the VWP are the largest source of international travel to the United States, generating more than 20.3 million travelers and $190 billion in economic output in 2014 alone.