“We have a moral duty to create an immigration system that protects the lives and jobs of our citizens”Trump
The US technology industry was one of the first to react to the controversial decision by the president, pointing out that it will harm innovation and cause delays in the process of economic recovery.
The suspension of visas will take effect until December 31.
Trump argued that between February and April of this year, about 20 million American workers became unemployed. Precisely in key industries where employers are requesting H-1B and L workers to fill those jobs.
Furthermore, the unemployment rate for young Americans in May was very high. Additionally, the jobs of these young people are competed by certain J nonimmigrant visa applicants. For the age range of 16 to 19 years old it was 29.9% and for the age group of 20 to 24 years, 23.2%.
“The entry of additional workers through the H-1B, H-2B, J, and L nonimmigrant visa programs therefore presents a significant threat to employment opportunities for Americans affected by extraordinary economic disruptions caused by the COVID-19 outbreak ».
One of the immigrant groups hardest hit by the measure is that of Indian citizens. They receive about 70% of the 85,000 H1-B visas that are issued annually. These restrictions will apply only to new work visas that are issued so they will not affect visa holders who are in the US.
This means that visa holders who are currently abroad will not be able to return to the United States. until January 2022 .
Google and Alphabet CEO Sundar Pichai, of Indian descent, said he was disappointed with President Donald Trump’s order to impose restrictions on immigration, including H-1B work visas.
“Immigration has contributed enormously to the economic success of the United States, making it a world leader in technology, and also Google, the company it is today.”Pichai wrote on Twitter.
“Disappointed by today’s proclamation, we will continue to lean on immigrants and work to expand opportunities for all,”added.
The American tech industry, too, has drawn strong criticism of Trump over the measures. Such restrictions will only help slow innovation and undermine the industry, critics say.
“The technology industry is working overtime to keep Americans connected during a global pandemic by providing food delivery services, telehealth care, collaborative business solutions, and ways for families and friends to stay connected.”TechNet President and CEO Linda Moore
She added that:
“Looking to the future, technology will continue to be crucial to rebuilding our (US) economy. Today’s executive order only hinders the ability of companies to make decisions about how best to deploy their existing workforce and hire new employees. This will slow innovation and undermine the work that the technology industry is doing to help our country recover from unprecedented events. ”Linda Moore
The move is believed to affect mostly US tech companies, and not so much Indian IT service providers. In recent years, Indian suppliers have reduced their dependence on H-1B work visas and have recruited more local workers.
The reaction of the technology companies is explained in the number of H-1B visas they obtain each year. Companies like Google, Facebook, Amazon and Microsoft have been progressively increasing the demand for these visas.
On our website you will find an updated guide with American visas and specific articles for the main visas.
Last year, seven of the top ten companies receiving H-1B visas were Americans.
According to data from the United States Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS), the proportion of Indian companies that were among the top 10 visa-receiving companies decreased. From 51% in 2016 it fell by more than half (24%) in 2019.
Alternatively, the Indian association of information technology and services companies Nasscom has asked the US government to reduce the restriction to 90 days instead of until the end of the year.
Nasscom said in a statement that:
“Although our companies have hired tens of thousands of Americans and invested billions of dollars in recent years, they like others in the industry to use such highly skilled people to serve their customers. This new proclamation will pose a new challenge and possibly force more work to be done on the high seas as local talent is not available. ”