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India To Act Tough On US Visa Fee Hike

29 Dec 2015


Immigration News

Indian Government has decided to take up the US VISA fee hike with the US Federal Government. After briefing from the IT giants and NASSCOM, India has prepared to approach the WTO's dispute settlement body, if the dialogue with the US fails in this regard.

The US Governments decision to increase the VISA fee two-fold had received the solemn protest from the Indian IT Sector. It is estimated that the US fee hike costs $400 million additionally; the industry termed the hike as discriminatory and against the global standards set by the World Trade Organization. According to new fee norm structure, US Government collects $4000 for H1B and $4500 for L1 Visa categories.

India is the major exporter of IT and allied services to the US and contributes largely to the American economy. H1B and L1 visas are temporary visas for skilled professionals in IT sector. India IT companies use close to 68% of the H1B Visas and 28% of L1 Visas which is the highest share among all other countries of the world.

 Despite being the major contributor, American political parties have been campaigning on right cut down of H1B visas. The recent law passed by the US on tax and spending bills worth Rs. $ 1.8 trillion will be used for the 9/11 victims. Though the purpose of the US Government is meaningful and benevolent, the fee hike is outrageous.

If the issue is not solved amicably, India will challenge the US decision at the World Trade Organization Panel. Experts have suggested that systematic establishment of companies problem associated with the VISA fee hike can bring the positive outcome, even if the issue is staged at the WTO panel.

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