Through Tuesday, industry leaders spoke out against the temporary suspension of certain visa holders’ entry into the US. “Today’s proclamation is a severe and sweeping attempt at restricting legal immigration. Putting up a ‘not welcome’ sign for engineers, executives, IT experts, doctors, nurses, and other workers won’t help our country, it will hold us back. Restrictive changes to our nation’s immigration system will push investment and economic activity abroad, slow growth, and reduce job creation,” said US Chamber of Commerce Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Thomas J Donohue.
The Indian IT industry
Association of Software and Services Companies (Nasscom) said the proclamation would impose new challenges and possibly force more work to be performed offshore since local talent was not available.
“We urge the US Administration to shorten the duration of these restrictions to 90 days. Lengthening these burdensome restrictions on US companies that are trying to recover from the economic fallout of the Covid-19 pandemic will only serve to harm our economy,” it said in a statement.
Alphabet and Google CEO Sundar Pichai also spoke out against the proclamation in a tweet: "Immigration has contributed immensely to America’s economic success, making it a global leader in tech, and also Google the company it is today. Disappointed by today’s proclamation - we’ll continue to stand with immigrants and work to expand opportunity for all."
The proclamation will come into effect at 12:01 am ET on June 24.
“Businesses across the US rely on temporary visas to supplement their local hiring efforts and enable highly-skilled and talented professionals from around the world to enhance America’s competitiveness on the global stage,” said Chandrajit Banerjee, director general of Confederation of Indian Industry (CII).
“They have also been supporting the US during the spread of the Covid-19 pandemic - retooling their American manufacturing units to produce essentials, providing pharmaceutical and health care assistance for drug discovery and clinical trials in the US, enabling distance education through tech platforms for US schools, and various other initiatives, demonstrating their commitment to the US economic recovery and rebuilding efforts,” added Banerjee.