President Donald Trump signed an order Tuesday to tighten rules on technology companies that hire highly skilled foreign workers.
The "buy American, hire American" directive does not make any immediate changes to the H-1B system, however, but commissions the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to review the way H-1B visas are granted. In short, the order aims at cracking down on skilled worker visa abuse and forces the government agencies to buy more domestically produced products. Senior administration officials say that the order will also strengthen rules that bar foreign contractors from bidding on federal government projects.
Trump and other critics of the program say it is abused by those Indian firms, who - they claim - flood the visa lottery with applications and then send workers to the US on salaries that undercut their American counterparts.
"They (visas) should be given to the most skilled and highest-paid applicants, and they should never, ever be used to replace Americans".
The trip to Wisconsin marked Trump's first visit to Speaker Paul Ryan's home state and district since taking office. "No longer are we going to allow foreign countries to cheat our producers and our workers out of federal contracts", he said.
Snap-on makes hand and power tools, diagnostics software, information and management systems, and shop equipment for use in various industries, including agriculture, the military and aviation. To qualify for the visa, workers usually must have a bachelor's degree or higher. The president alluded numerous times during his remarks to Ryan, as well as Chief of Staff Reince Priebus - a Kenosha native - and Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, an early Trump supporter during last year's campaign. Many Trump-branded products, such as clothing, are made overseas. His businesses also have hired foreign workers, including at his Palm Beach, Fla., club.
When he was running for president, then-candidate Trump said he routinely hired seasonal foreign workers for his Mar-a-Lago resort in Palm Beach because it was nearly impossible to hire American workers. India represents the most elevated pool of qualified IT experts, whose services go far in making American organizations globally competitive.
Nasscom reiterated the point that persistent myths surrounding H-1B visas as cheap labour or displacing American workers as inaccurate.