I am advised by the Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service, INIS, of my Department that decisions regarding the grant or refusal of visas are made in a number of INIS visa offices overseas, the INIS visa office in Dublin and at over 80 Irish Embassies around the world. The embassies, which are under the remit of my colleague, the Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade, process certain visa applications under delegated sanction from my Department. The processing times for visa decisions are published on the visa pages of each visa office and embassy website. As of last week, 18 June 2019, the average time taken to process an employment visa received in either the INIS visa offices in Dublin or overseas was three weeks. The processing time in each location is determined by a number of factors, such as the volume and complexity of applications, individual circumstances, peak application periods, seasonal factors and the resources available. While every effort is made to process applications as quickly as possible, processing times will inevitably vary as a result. Notwithstanding that the visa service is currently experiencing an increase in the number of visa applications across most categories, processing times are on a par in many cases and there have been significant improvements compared to the corresponding time last year. A number of measures have been put in place to deal with what is a significantly increased demand for visas on the part of people wishing to come to Ireland, including the assignment of additional staff to process applications and the streamlining of visa processes where possible. I acknowledge that my colleague, the Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation, also has a role and function in respect of the processing of applications for work permits.