Published: Fri, April 21, 2017
Business | By Max Garcia

Nasscom hopes to overcome US, Australia visa curbs

Nasscom hopes to overcome US, Australia visa curbs

"The Indian IT industry brings in skilled people in areas where there are gaps in the United States and in spite of the gap if the USA believes that protection is required for qualified American workers, we have no objection provided they go for full protection".

Mr Baglay said, the government has facilitated expansion of workforce through its flagship programmes such as "Make in India" and "Skill India" as also by delivering large technological partnerships and enhanced Foreign Direct Investment. Now that he is in power, Trump wants to review the whole H-1B programme and promote local hiring to reduce the unemployment.

The foreign ministry said on Thursday it was keeping a "close watch" on the USA move to tighten H-1B visa rules that will impact the Indian IT industry and its professionals, asserting that the issue will be taken up with the Donald Trump administration.

IT industry body Nasscom has no objection to the U.S. protecting its qualified workforce but only wants such measures to be made applicable to all companies instead of just Indian firms. The move, if implemented, risks escalating into a full-blown trade war that could harm the otherwise warm relationship between Indian and the U.S., the report said.

"We are an immigration nation, but the fact remains: Australian workers must have priority for Australian jobs, so we are abolishing the 457 visa, the visa that brings temporary foreign workers into our country", said Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull.

"Right now, widespread abuse in our immigration system is allowing American workers of all backgrounds to be replaced by workers brought in from other countries", he said.

He said visa issue will be part of the India's talks with the countries where changes in visa programme have been made which are impacting Indian professionals.

"Globally there is a rising trend of protectionism and anti-globalisation".

Sitharaman wants U.S. to keep few things in mind while reviewing its business policies. "Do not say we are providing protection by only stopping a certain category of companies (which is defined in such a way that only Indian companies get impacted)", he said. He is leading an Indian delegation to attend the annual Spring meeting of the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank in US. Instead, he has asked his department to suggest reforms to ensure H-1B visas are awarded to the most-skilled or highest-paid beneficiaries. "We will keep this issue on our radar", he told reporters. The programme will be replaced by another visa programme with new restrictions.

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