H1B visa will be given on merit basis: Donald Trump
Washington : US President Donald Trump has asked his administration to "reform" the H-1B visa system and opt for merit-based immigration, White House officials have said.
"Moving to a merit-based immigration system," the White House said in a statement soon after Trump issued a proclamation to temporarily suspend H-1B and other work visas till the end of the year.
The move comes to allow highest skilled workers in the country and also protect jobs for Americans.
Under these reforms, the H-1B programme will prioritise those workers who are offered the highest wage, ensuring that the highest-skilled applicants are admitted, the White House said.
It has been learned that the Trump administration is now working on closing all loop holes that allowed cheap foreign workers to replace American workers.
These reforms will help protect the wages of American workers and ensure that foreign labour entering our country is high skilled and does not undercut the United States labour market, the White House added.
"The more permanent actions that he is directing us to take include reforming the H-1B system to move in the direction of a more merit-based system. You hear the president talk all the time about getting the best and the brightest, and you also hear him talking about protecting American jobs. So, these reforms will do both," a senior administration official told reporters during a conference call.
The official also notified that there were no caps in the number of H1B visas. Last year, 2,25,000 applications were received for those visas.
"Up until this year, those visas have been distributed through random lottery... The president has instructed us to get rid of the lottery and replace it with ranking the salaries - so the top 85,000 salary offers among the 225,000 or so applicants will get visas," the official said.