18 October 2010

Indian Prime Minister to discuss US Visa concerns with Obama

Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh is expected to raise concerns over recent changes to US Visa and outsourcing rules during President Barack Obama’s visit next month.

US Visa

Talks about the recent US Visa changes are expected when Obama visits India next month.

Recently, the US passed a law to increase the US Visa fee for H-1B and L1 categories by $2,000 and $2,250 respectively to pay for increased border security with Mexico.  Indians received about half of all H-1B and L-1 visas in 2009, and comprise most of the roughly 50 percent of all H-1B and L-1 recipients who work in computer-related occupations in the US.

In a second blow to Indian companies the state of Ohio banned offshore outsourcing of jobs by government departments.

The Prime Minister will raise concerns over these changes amid hopes that these would not affect the rapidly growing bilateral ties between the two countries.

External Affairs Minister S.M. Krishna said Indian IT companies have expressed reservations over recent US decisions on outsourcing and tightening of visa rules for Indians.

“Certainly, these issues will come up in discussions,” the External Affairs Minister said.

Mr Krishna said that the complementarities and commonalities between India and the US were “so decisive” that “different perceptions” on some issues would not affect the ties between the two countries.

The American Visa Bureau is an independent consulting company specialising in helping people with their ESTA application to the US Embassy.

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