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  • Groundbreaking for Phase II of the Las Vegas Convention Center expansion took place Jan. 8, adding about 1.4 million square feet by 2021.
  • CES set a new show record of 2.75 million nsf of exhibit space when it opened Jan. 9, topping the 2017 record
  • Visit KC is looking for a new President and CEO because Ronnie Burt will step down Jan. 31 after settlement of a lawsuit.
  • CES experienced an opening day power outage at the LVCC affecting the Central Hall. South and North Halls reportedly were up and running.
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  • A memorial service is pending for John Portman Jr., 93, founder of the company that became AmericasMart Atlanta. He died Dec. 29.
  • Shepard is acquiring Production Associates, an audio-visual provider based in the Washington, D.C., market.

U.S. Expands Check on Foreign Visitors

Trade Show Executive
April 12, 2004
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Washington, DC - In a surprise move, the Homeland Security Department announced on April 2nd that new rules will take effect in six months  that would require citizens from 27  “visa waiver” countries to be fingerprinted and photographed  upon entering the United States.   The decision will close what the  government sees as a loophole in screening visitors. However, it  is expected to negatively impact international travel to the U.S. and international visitors to U.S. trade shows. 

Starting this past January, government officials began taking digital photographs of visitors from most foreign countries,  and then electronically scanned their right and left index fingers. These were checked against U.S. anti-terrorism and crime databases. The screening  was part of the US-Visit program, which stands for United States Visitor & Immigrant Status Indicator Terminology.

Visitors from 27 countries had been exempt from the screening program.  Starting   September 30th,, citizens of these countries  will be fingerprinted and photographed when arriving in the U.S.:  Andorra, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brunei, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Monaco, The Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Portugal, San Marino, Singapore, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and the United Kingdom.

More information is available at

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