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Indian IT firms will apply H1-B for high level professionals this year: Nasscom

Reacting to the latest H-1B memorandum issued by Trump administration, Nasscom has said that Indian IT companies will be 'applying for visas for higher level professionals this year’

April 05, 2017 / 06:41 PM IST

In order to soothe anti-outsourcing tempers in the US, India’s apex software association Nasscom has said that the latest US memorandum on H1-B visas will have little impact on IT companies as ‘they are applying for visas for higher level professionals this year’.

“The clarifying guidance should have little impact on our members. Several of our member executives have noted recently, they are applying for visas for higher level professionals this year,” Nasscom said in a statement.

The association counts major IT outsourcing firms such as Infosys, TCS, Wipro, Cognizant and US firms such as Microsoft, IBM as members.

The IT association also debunked the fact that outsourcing happens due to labour arbitrage and H1-B professionals are sometimes used to replace costly US labour.

“The H-1B visa system exists specifically because of the persistent shortage of highly-skilled domestic IT talent in the US. Nasscom member companies have and will continue to provide skilled talent and solutions to fill that gap and keep US companies competitive globally,” the statement added.

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The new H1B guidelines rescind a memorandum issued on December 22, 2000, titled - Guidance memo on H-1B computer related positions. “While the 2000 memorandum stated that most programmers had a bachelor’s degree or higher, that information is not particularly relevant to a specialty occupation adjudication if it does not also provide the specific specialties the degrees were in and/or what, if any, relevance those degrees had to the computer programmer occupation,” the new guideline stated.

The Indian IT-BPO industry is projected to grow nearly 8 percent in 2017 to USD 154 billion of which exports account for nearly USD 117 billion. The IT industry comprises over 16,000 firms that employ 3.9 million in India.,

“It is improper to conclude based on this information that USCIS would generally consider the position of a programmer to qualify as a speciality occupation,” the March 31, 2017, guideline issued to employers and visa officers stated.

Also read: 10 things to know about H1-B visa and its revised rules
first published: Apr 4, 2017 02:32 pm

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