Trump’s new order: As H-1B visa window gets smaller, Indian IT sees red
US President Donald Trump has signed an executive order on Wednesday in order to protect American industry, which targeted Indian information technology services firms where the companies are dependent on H-1B visas to send engineers to work on projects to the US.
The President has directed some of his top administration officials like the Secretaries of State, Labor and Homeland Security along with the Attorney General to suggest the reforms, so that the H-1B visas are given only given to the most skilled ones or highest paid beneficiaries.
The move that was made by Trump will be helpful to the entities such as Google, Oracle and Facebook to take benefit of the programme to get more engineers from India to work on projects and then back home. In the meanwhile, it is expected to hurt outsourcing companies like Wipro, Infosys and Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) here in India. These companies have been traditionally using the H-1B visa programme to send the engineers to work on projects in America.
It said that the concept of reorienting the H-1B lottery will be a system that will prioritises the “most-skilled or highest-paid” visa applicants and also said that their Administration needs to be much careful about unintended consequences.
TCS said that the company has reduced the number of visas that it has applied for the past few years and said they are hiring local engineers for several local development centres in the US.
Infosys also made clear that they are hiring the local engineers and train them and deploy on projects to invest in local communities in the US.
Annually it has not changed the quota of 85,000 H-1B visas issued which is included with 20,000 visas for holders of a Master’s degree.
Nasscom stated that they have no issues with measures aimed at protecting American workers. The lobby group said that measures should be taken and made applicable for all companies applying for high-skill and short-term visas, including H-1B.
The Business analysts say that the immediate impact is not done on Indian entities because they have reduced sending people on H-1B visas by looking and hiring the local ones in the US.
India said on Wednesday that it is in touch with the Trump Administration and making “full assessment” of its impact on Indian IT professionals. Gopal Baglay, External Affairs Ministry Spokesman said that India is also in touch with Australia regarding the changes in that country’s work visa programme.