The National Foundation for American Policy (NFAP) has released a new study on H-1B visas in 2017-18. NFAP noted that more H-1B visas are going to U.S. technology companies, reflecting the strong demand for high-skilled talent in the U.S. economy, and fewer visas are being used by Indian-based companies, which continues a recent trend. NFAP said new USCIS data appears to undermine the argument that the federal government should impose new restrictions on H-1B visas and keep the visas at a low annual limit of 85,000 for companies, which equals only 0.05% of the U.S. labor force of 160 million.
H-1B temporary visas “are important as they are typically the only practical way a high-skilled foreign national working abroad or an international student educated in the United States can work long-term in America,” NFAP notes. Four of 6 high-profile U.S. tech companies—Amazon (2,515), Microsoft (1,479), Intel (1,230), and Google (1,213) —were among the top 10 employers for approved H-1B petitions for initial employment in FY 2017. Facebook, with 720 new H-1B initial petitions approved in FY 2017, an increase of 248, or 53%, and Apple, with 673, a 7% increase, were 14th and 15th on the list. Amazon had the second highest number of H-1B petitions approved for initial employment in FY 2017, with an increase from 1,416 in FY 2016 to 2,515 in FY 2017. NFAP said that Amazon’s use of H-1Bs reflects its increased growth in the United States, particularly in research and development. Further, NFAP noted that the top H-1B employers among high-profile tech companies match up with the U.S. companies that spend the most on research and development.  Related Link: