Trump’s limits on H1-B visas seen hurting Indian IT companies and workers

indica News Bureau-


U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) data reveals that amid President Trump’s administration limiting high-skilled immigration, the technology sector has been hit the hardest.


Indian-based IT companies with operations in the U.S. are facing serious difficulties in securing H1-B working visas for their employees. The allotment of these visas is done on a partial basis by the Trump administration. While tech giants like Google and Amazon are continuing to see visas come in at the same rate for years, smaller U.S-based Indian IT firms are facing a disadvantage.


USCIS data also indicates that the H1-B rejection rate is higher for Indian IT consulting firms in the U.S. than for some large American companies. For instance, Capgemini saw 28% of applications rejections, Infosys followed with 18%, Deloitte had 15% to 17%, Wipro showed a 13% rate of declined applications, and TCS and Tech Mahindra with 12% each, according to Indian Business, Technology, Mobile & Startup blog Meanwhile, tech giant Amazon showed a rejection rate of 2%, and Google, Facebook, and Apple with rates of 1% of H1-B applications declined.


However, 70% of the H1-B visas are secured by Indians, according to the data.


According to an article by Forbes competition from Indian firms in the bigger picture are conducive to the growth of the American economy, which means the US government is harming the economy in the long-term in order to see short term employment benefits.


Peter Bender Samuel, Founder of Everest Group, one of the largest research firms focused on IT, business processes and engineering, told Forbes, “The U.S. faces an acute shortage of digital and IT skills, and these digital transformations and digital platforms require a significant amount of these skills to build and maintain. The access to international talent and particularly to the large Indian talent pool is vital to the success of these programs. When the administration restricts the ability to bring these scarce skills into the United States by restricting H-1B and L-1 visas, making the granting of these visas more difficult and less predictable, it directly affects these firms’ ability to build and scale these digital platforms and negatively affects the competitiveness of U.S. companies.”


The disconnect between the digital transformation in US-based IT firms that need access to international talent to achieve their goals and the current administration’s immigration policies is indeed contradictory.


A report last year from the National Foundation for American Policy (NFAP) said that new H-1B petitions for the top seven Indian companies had declined 43% between FY 2015 and 2017. “The decline in H-1B visas for Indian-based companies is due to industry trends toward digital services such as cloud computing and artificial intelligence, which require fewer workers, and a choice by companies to rely less on visas and to build up their domestic workforces in America,” the report said.


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