There has been much talk about the impact of the changes to the H-1B visa in the United States on the Indian tech sector. Proposed changes to the visa class, and the already announced changes are expected to heavily impact the tech sector and concerns have been raised by the government of India in how to deal with the possible fallout of the situation. Already it has been announced that the fast track system allowing applicants to the H-1B visa programme process their applications in 15 days has been suspended for an initial six months and it is widely believed that wide ranging changes will be implemented by the Trump regime in the near future.
In response to this the Commerce and Industry Minister of India has been in talks with Canadian officials asking for Canada to ease the rules for short term visas for Indian workers. Changes to the Temporary Foreign Workers Programme in Canada had made travel for Indians more difficult and it is hoped that the Indian and Canadian governments can work together to make the visa application easier for Indians in the wake of the H-1B visa issues. It has already been reported that many overseas tech firms are looking at alternative to the United States as a foreign base now that the restriction on the H-1B visa seem inevitable and Canada has been seen as a viable alternative due to its proximity and easy access to Silicon Valley and other tech hubs
The Indian government has pointed out to the Canadians that some tech firms located in Canada are finding it difficult to fill key skills due to the visa restrictions and the Canadians have assured India that a number of steps have already been take to ease the issues.
One Canadian minister is quoted as saying that under the Global Skill Strategy Programme visas can now be processed within two weeks and a similar fast track for less than one year visas is being set up to help those companies already invested in Canada.
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