Trump floats citizenship for H1B visa holders

US President Donald Trump Promises Changes To H-1B Visas

On H1-B visa, Donald Trump promises citizenship, welcomes talented, skilled people to US

US President Donald Trump on Friday assured H-1B visa holders, an overwhelming majority of whom are Indian IT professionals, that his administration will soon bring changes that will give them certainty to stay in America and a "potential path to citizenship".

President Donald Trump on Friday said he is planning changes to H-1B visas, which are issued temporarily to highly educated immigrants so they can work in specialty occupations, that would create simplicity, certainty and a possibility that the workers could become USA citizens. "We want to encourage talented and highly skilled people to pursue career options in the US", Trump tweeted on Friday morning, hours after he returned from Texas, where he inspected the border and held a round table to make the case for Congressional funding for a border wall.

The Trump administration, she said, has stepped up its measures to detect employment-based visa fraud and abuse, but certain non-immigrant visa programmes need reform in order to protect American workers better.

He was referring to a set of rule changes that were proposed by the administration last December to introduce electronic registration of petitioners to replace the lottery system, which is meant to make the process less expensive, simpler and certain - to "reduce overall costs for petitioners and create a more efficient and cost-effective H-1B cap petition process".

His promise on H1-Bs came just as Trump is pressing to build a wall on the Mexican border to keep out unauthorized immigrants and asylum seekers, most of whom are low-skilled, in a showdown with Congress that has triggered a shutdown of the federal government. US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) directed questions about it to the White House, and a response was awaited.

The proposal is created to increase the number of H-1B beneficiaries by 16 percent, or 5,340 more workers, who hold advanced degrees from American universities.

The Republican president has often said he wanted an immigration system that favoured educated or highly skilled people.

This is not Mr Trump's first attempt to overhaul visas - in April 2017, he ordered a reform of the USA visa program to benefit educated and highly skilled workers.

Democrats say the wall project, which carries a total price tag of more than $20 billion, is expensive, ineffective and immoral.

Trump campaigned for president on a promise to crack down on immigrants, who he said took jobs away from United States citizens.

Trump on Friday tweeted that his administration is planning an overhaul of United States policies on H-1B visa and will encourage talented and highly-skilled people to pursue career options in the US.

The H-1B visa allows foreigners to work in the United States for three years, with options to renew their stay.

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