HYDERABAD: The US cap on H1B visas for Indians will be raised if US president Barack Obama accepts the IndoUS free trade agreement (FTA) submitted by the India Caucus in the US Senate, according to Mark R.Warner, senator from Virginia and cochair of the caucus. It will also simplify the procedure for applying for permanent residence in the US, especially for those involved in scientific research and in the technology sector, the senator said.
According to Warner, the caucus has also urged the Obama administration to make the IndoUS investment treaty a higher priority. "It's in America's own interest to have this treaty. Worldclass Indian companies like Wipro and Infosys are looking at expanding their footprints in the US. They need to have an assurance that their investments would be protected. My hope is that we can push the Obama administration to take it up shortly," he said.
Stating that it took some time for the US to work through some of the FTAs, including those with Korea and Colombia, Warner explained that the US government thinks the first step towards an FTA with India will be the bilateral investment treaty.
Dismissing apprehensions in America about outsourcing to India, Warner said the US sees India and the south Asian region as a tremendous growth market, especially for IT outsourcing.
Speaking to the media on the sidelines of the CII Partnership Summit, he said, "Both India and the US have expectations from the other side. We understand Indian concerns about outsourcing. I think one of the ways of mitigating them is to see more Indian companies investing in the US."
The fivemember delegation will visit Kolkata next.