Immigration-related issues facing the IT sector employees are just operational concerns for the companies and the industry is taking steps to overcome them, said industry body Nasscom president R Chandrashekhar today. Replying to query on the latest announcements curbing skilled job visas by Australia and the US, he said there is a rising trend of “protectionism” globally and anti-globalisation. “All of these are big changes that are happening beyond just policy changes of individual governments and the industry has been taking several steps to cope with them. The domestic IT industry has transformed many times in the past. These are operational challenges. “The immigration related issues are some of the operational challenges which they face today. It is just one more dimension of the economic and technological challenges. We believe that the industry is capable of once again transforming to the extent needed based on these shifts,” Chandrashekhar told reporters on the sidelines of an event here.
He said that every country wants high skilled workers from anywhere in the world and the struggle is to give a definition as to what is highly skilled workforce and to ensure that immigration policies of a country opens the doors to high skilled people. Australia has abolished a specialised visa programme called 457 visa, which has been mostly used by over 95,000 temporary foreign workers, majority of them Indians, to tackle the growing unemployment. The programme will be replaced by another visa programme with new restrictions.
This scheme allowed businesses to employ foreign workers up to four years in skilled jobs where there is a shortage of Australian workers. “We will have to wait and see what is the overall impact, but some of the fundamentals which make us optimistic about our industry’s future in this space remain unchanged. As far as the domestic IT industry is concerned growth is strong”, he said. Nasscom while stating that there will not be any major impact due to the move, yesterday said it would work closely with the governments to understand more details on the changes and ensure these changes can be implemented seamlessly to ensure business continuity for Australian customers.