The United States House of Representatives unveiled the ambitious America Creating Opportunities for Manufacturing, Pre-Eminence in Technology, and Economic Strength Act of 2022, or the America COMPETES Act of 2022, which proposes to open up new vistas for talented individuals from across the world with a new start-up visa.
What is the COMPETES Act?
- The bill provides $52 billion to encourage more semiconductor production in the US, and $45 billion for grants and loans to improve supply chain resilience and manufacturing, among other programs.
- It also includes funding to address social and economic inequality, climate change, and immigration.
- For instance, it provides an exemption for STEM PhDs from the green card cap and creates a new green card for entrepreneurs.
- The bill also authorizes $600 million a year to construct manufacturing facilities to make the US less reliant on solar components made in Xinjiang, China.
Key provisions in the COMPETES Act
- The Act amends the Immigration and Nationality Act to create a new classification of “W” non-immigrants for entrepreneurs with an ownership interest in a start-up entity.
- It seeks to establish procedures for foreign nationals with an ownership interest in a start-up entity to self-petition for lawful permanent resident status as an immigrant entrepreneur.
- The bill exempts from the numerical limits on immigrant visas certain foreign nationals (and the spouses and children of such aliens) who have earned a doctoral degree in STEM.
Implications for Indians
- It would mean more opportunities in the US for Indian talent, and for skilled workers.
- Every year, the US administration issues 85,000 H-1B work permits.
- Every year, Indians and Indian companies corner a lion’s share of the H-1B work permits issued that year.
- With this new category, Indian professionals will likely have a better shot at opportunities that the Act is likely to provide.
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