A diplomat visa is issued to diplomats and other government officials for travel to the US. With the exception of a Head of State or Government who qualifies for an A diplomat visa regardless of the purpose of their visit to the US, the type of visa required by a diplomat or other government official depends upon their purpose of travel to the United States.
A diplomat visa applicants must be traveling to the US on behalf of their national government to engage solely in official activities for that government. The fact that there may be government interest or control in a given organization is not in itself the defining factor in determining if an applicant can qualify for a visa. The particular duties or services that will be performed must be governmental in character or nature, as determined by the US Department of State. Government officials traveling to the US to perform non-governmental functions of a commercial nature, or traveling as tourists, do not qualify for A diplomat visas.
Foreign officials who are traveling to the US on official business must obtain an A diplomat visa prior to their entry. Applicants cannot travel on tourist visas or under the Visa Waiver Program. Local government officials representing their state, province, borough, or other local political entity do not qualify for an A diplomat visa and instead require a B1 business visa.