The Senate Judiciary Committee passed S.744, the Senate immigration reform bill and this bill will soon be voted by the full Senate. This bill includes a proposal that would boost immigrant entrepreneurship and the bill would create a new visa program called the INVEST (Investing in New Venture, Entrepreneurial Startups, and Technologies) visa program, meant for immigrant entrepreneurs. This new visa program would permit immigrant entrepreneurs to come to the United States and start businesses. Nevertheless, their businesses must be capable of creating new jobs in America and this would be the country’s first visa category specifically designed for immigrant entrepreneurs.
The immigration reform bill would create two types of INVEST visas, immigrant INVEST visas and non-immigrant INVEST visas. Non-immigrant INVEST visas could be renewed by the foreign investors if their investments create jobs and meet the other criteria, within three years. Moreover, the bill would make the EB-5 Regional Center Program, permanent. That is because, this program has created several jobs in America and has attracted several foreign investors. At the same time, immigrant entrepreneurs have also made substantial contributions to the country and they have founded many businesses, in the country. Moreover, more number of immigrants start new businesses in America and around 28 percent of the new businesses in the country were started by immigrants, in 2011 whereas only 13 percent of the new businesses in America were started by US citizens.
Likewise, they have contributed billions of dollars to the country’s economy. Global Detroit Welcoming Center for New Pennsylvanians, Welcome Dayton and the Chicago Office of New Americans are few initiatives that are attracting immigrant entrepreneurs. Immigrant entrepreneurs must be attracted as they would help revitalize ailing economies. EB-5 visa program is doing good in Vermont and Senator Leahy wants to make this program more popular. This new INVEST visa program would effectively encourage and attract foreign investors. This would also spur job creation and benefit the country’s economy. The Senate immigration reform bill would make available 10,000 immigrant visas for immigrant entrepreneurs, every year. The bill would also create 3 year non-immigrant INVEST visas, that could be renewed.