The Ministry of External Affairs on Wednesday told reporters that the government was in touch with the United States government and was making a full assessment of the impact on the US’ decision on the H1B visa. The MEA is also in talks with Australia regarding the changes in the country’s work visa programme. Earlier yesterday, just weeks following PM Malcolm Turnbull’s India visit, Australia abolished a visa programme used by over 95,000 foreign workers, of which a majority were Indians, reports suggest, in an attempt to tackle the alleged unemployment in the country.
The visa programme, also known as the 457 visa allowed companies to employ foreign workers for a period of up to 4 years. Australian PM Turnbull had told the media that while it was true that Australia was a nation of immigrants but the Australian workers must be given priority for jobs. It must be noted that a majority of these visa holders are from India, UK and China. According to reports, the 457 visa programme would be replaced by a new via a programme with renewed restrictions.
Turnbull had said that the new visa programme would be installed to ensure that foreign workers were brought into the country to fill the important skill gaps and not because employers found it easy to employ foreign workers. Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, earlier today had indicated that he would be taking up the H1-B visa issue with the authorities in the United States of America during his 5-day visit. Her told reporters, “These (IT industry issues) are matters of discussion with the appropriate authorities there. Once I do discuss and get an opportunity, I will let you know.” FM Arun Jaitley is scheduled to leave for the US tonight.