Indian IT Professionals Face Tough Time With Visa Restrictions
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The visa woes of Indian IT professionals no longer limited to the United States, since other countries such as the United Kingdom, Canada, and Australia are also following in the footsteps of America. These countries too have extended visa curbs on Indian immigrants, along with obscuring the rules that are open to interpretation by local authorities.
The rise in the nationalist sentiment among countries all over the world is being considered the main reason behind this development, and as a result, many countries are trying to restrict the entry of foreign workforce.
These concerns shared by the National Association of Software and Services Companies (NASSCOM) have now prompted the government to recognize the hurdles, most of which are against the assurances given by these countries to India at the World Trade Organization and their trade agreements with India, the Times of India reported. The study shows that there is no match between the commitments given by the countries and the visa issued.
In the midst of these developments, India is trying to push for a permanent trade agreement for facilitation in services. The country is also conducting talks to implement liberal rules in Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN), and other countries like Australia, New Zealand and China, which fall under the regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA).
Despite continuous efforts from the Indian government, these countries are not willing to ease the visa rules. US President Donald Trump’s “Buy American, Hire American” sentiment resulted in, for the first time in many years, a fall in the number of applicants for H-1B visa. Simultaneously, the number of Indians in the United States searching for jobs back home increased by 10 times between December 2016 and March 2017, according to research firm Deloitte.
Hassles in the United Kingdom
After the United States, Indian IT professionals consider the United Kingdom as a big hub. In January this year, the country rejected demands for the re-introduction of the post-study work visa, which was very popular among overseas students, especially from India. The European Union gave an absurd reason for abolishing the post-study work visa, saying, “The brightest and best of students should not come here and do menial jobs.”
Earlier, in 2015, the UK government raised the threshold maintenance funds a student should have in their bank account by 24 per cent.
New Zealand Tightens Visa Rules
In April, the New Zealand government also announced plans to block foreign workers in the country, in a bid to control the number of migrations to the country, amid growing concern of overcrowding in Auckland.
“The government has a Kiwis-first approach to immigration. It’s important that our immigration settings are attracting the right people, with the right skills, to help fill genuine skill shortages and contribute to our growing economy,” Michael Woodhouse, the New Zealand Immigration Minister, had said to Guardian.
“That is why we are making a number of changes to our permanent and temporary immigration settings aimed at managing the number and improving the quality, of migrants coming to New Zealand,” he added.
Australia’s Visa Policy Gets Tighter
Australia is also imposing strict rules on Indian techies. Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull announced the country’s stand over hiring foreign workforce through a video posted on his official Facebook page. In April Turnbull said that jobs must first go to Australians before businesses consider hiring foreign workers. He also said that the government is scrapping the 457 Visa Program, which allows skilled migrants to work in Australia.