The new legislations will force IT companies such as Infosys, TCS, MindTree, Infosys to hire more in the United States and not renew existing visas of employees. The visa is valid for three years and is normally extendable up to six years.
"India's interests and concerns have been conveyed both to the U.S. Administration and the U.S. Congress at senior levels", Vikas Swarup, a spokesman for the ministry, said.
Indian H-1B workers in the U.S., who number about six lakh, face an uncertain future. It would also establish wage requirements for L-1 workers and improve H-1B wage requirements to encourage companies to hire qualified American workers and prevent them from using foreign workers as a source of cheap labor. "India, on the contrary, has been resilient and has time and again proved to be America's long standing friend", said Rajiv Dabhadkar, founder of the National Organisation for Software and Technology Professionals, which works for Indian workers overseas.
Some analysts are of the opinion that Indian companies could easily witness around 60-70 per cent rise in salaries of the H-1B visa dependent workforce.
Speaking at an event, Chief Economic Adviser Arvind Subramanian said, "My concern is that Donald trump in last debate said, 'H-1B, whatever it is, I use it but I don't like it".
Industry lobby group Nasscom was responding to a bill introduced by Congresswoman Zoe Lofgren, a Democrat from California, that would double the minimum salary required for holders of H-1B visas to $130,000 and determine how numerous visas were allocated, based on factors such as overall wages. He advocated allocation of visas to those companies willing to pay 200% of a wage calculated.
The contentious H1B visas are given to foreign nationals in "specialty" occupations that generally require higher education, who according to the USA government rules include engineers, computer programmers and scientists.
Indian tech companies will likely take a hit from these proposed restrictions and they will have to likely increase their local hiring. According to an article in news website Vox, "Limiting legal immigration: Protecting American Jobs and Workers by Strengthening of Foreign Worker Visa Programs" was the theme of one of the executive orders. "This ensures American employers have access to the talent they need, while removing incentives for companies to undercut American wages and outsource jobs".
Richard Verma, former USA ambassador to India, estimates that out of the 85,000 H-1B visas issued annually, over 70 percent go to Indians. He added that the new regulations in the bill nullifies the "per country" cap and all the employment based immigrant visa holders will be treated fairly irrespective of their national origin. This is not an executive order signed by Trump.