US President Donald Trump is going to severely limit the issue of work visas to foreign workers. On Monday, he signed a proclamation to help relaunch the US economy, badly hit by the corona pandemic. Large tech companies which rely heavily on Asian workforce have criticized the action and warned against economic damage.
The decision will, among other things, stop issuing so-called H1-B and H-4 visas until the end of this year. Such visas are used for highly skilled workers who want to work in the technology sector and their families. The issuing of work permits for seasonal workers is also severely restricted.
According to a senior government official, freezing the visa issue will free up 525,000 jobs for Americans. The decision should “get Americans back to work as soon as possible,” the government official told Reuters news agency. How the White House calculated that number was not disclosed.
Twitter and Amazon have called the decision “shortsighted” in statements. Google boss Sundar Pichai also expressed his disappointment with the proclamation.
“We will continue to support immigrants and work to increase opportunities for all,” Pichai said on Twitter.
The US Chamber of Commerce responded that the decision will negatively impact the economic recovery in the US.