US Expected to Scrap
Visa Program for Entrepreneurs
July 11, 2017
President Donald Trump's administration is postponing and plans to drop
a program to provide visas for foreign entrepreneurs who launch
companies in the United States.
The visa program, proposed last year by former President Barack Obama,
was intended to give entrepreneurs who are not eligible for other types
of visas permission to live in the U.S. for 30 months to get their
enterprises up and running.
Leading figures in the technology industry had lobbied strongly for the
visa program as a way for immigrants to come to the U.S. to start
companies, contribute to the economy and create more jobs. The
Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has estimated that nearly 3,000
entrepreneurs would be eligible for such visas each year.
The so-called startup visa program was to have taken effect next week,
but DHS issued a notice Tuesday postponing implementation of the
International Entrepreneur Rule until March 14, 2018.
The notice posted online by the Federal Register said DHS plans to
rescind the rule, but is requesting public comments before issuing a
The program would permit non-U.S. citizens to stay in the country for
renewable 30-month terms if they have $250,000 in capital investments or
win $100,000 in government grants to support their proposals.
president of the National Venture Capital Association, Bobby Franklin,
said Monday the administration's decision was "extremely disappointing."
“At a time when countries around the world are doing all they can to
attract and retain talented individuals to come to their shores to build
and grow innovative companies," Franklin said, "the Trump administration
is signaling its intent to do the exact opposite.”
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, part of the DHS, has said it
decided to delay the rule to ensure it is consistent with an executive
order Trump issued during his first days in office, limiting federal
officials' authority to grant permission for foreign nationals to remain
in the U.S., except on a case-by-case basis.