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H-1 B visa hike! Will trade ties with US flail?

According to the recent changes in the visa norms, visa fees for the H1B visa have been hiked and the Indian IT companies will from April 1st, have to shell out almost $ 8000 to $ 10,000 per visa. The annual session for H-1B visa filing starts. Will this recent change be economically viable for the companies?H1-bVisa-380

The visa hike has been called as “discriminatory”, according to FICCI today and the industry body fears that this may affect the trade ties that India is trying to build with the US. This will indirectly affect the building economy of the United States as the revenues that are to be obtained from the taxes collected from the IT firms, will be compromised. In a statement rendered by the body it has been noted that  “FICCI feels that the hike in special fee on the popular H-1B and L-1 visas for James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act of 2010 will hamper the growth of the US economy and will be discriminatory for Indian IT companies.”

The hike is made not only because of the recent visa changes announced by President Barack Obama  through the Consolidated Appropriations Act 2016, where a new fees of $ 4,000 was forced on the IT companies but also because of other fees that have been added to the application for H-1B visas in the last ten years by the Congress.

The original application fees for the H-1B visa is about USD 325 and the FICCI states “Indian IT industry is of the opinion that the additional fee is unjustified similar to the earlier border security and now Health and compensation Act it has little relation with the technology industry.” This will restrict the access of the IT personnel who travel to the US and also affect the trade.

The industry body has mentioned “In the longer run, it will also imbalance Americas IT services and products consumer market. In our view linking unemployment and H1-B visa issue with 9/11 Health and Compensation Act is unfair and should be dealt independently with a much broader outlook considering the overall impact on both economies.”

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