Trump signs 'Buy American, Hire American' order


Trump is to sign the order when he visits the world headquarters of Snap-On Inc (SNA.N), a tool manufacturer in Kenosha, Wisconsin.

Nasscom reiterated the point that persistent myths surrounding H-1B visas as cheap labour or displacing American workers as inaccurate.

"If it turns out America is a net loser because of those free-trade agreement waivers, which apply to nearly 60 countries, these waivers may be promptly renegotiated or revoked", the second official said.

The US has already moved on addressing this issue by announcing a new set of guidelines for those qualifying for H-1B visas.

When asked by reporters what policy changes will take effect immediately after Trump signed the order, a senior administration official detailed how the president is really asking for self-assessments from a range of federal agencies. Dubbed "Buy American, Hire American", the directive follows a series of recent Trump reversals on economic policies. It also targets waivers and exceptions that have allowed foreign goods unfair advantages in US government procurement. Why shouldn't we try and hire American workers as much as possible, and yes, buy American products as much as we can? "Currently, companies routinely abuse the H-1B visa program by replacing American workers with lower paid foreign workers", the statement reads. "Does that make sense?" Subsequent reports will be submitted by each agency head to the Secretary of Commerce and the Director of the Office of Management and Budget by November 15 on an ongoing, annual basis. Administration officials complain that those laws have been watered down over the years and often are sidestepped with government waivers.

The President's executive order directs the federal bureaucracy to enforce visa law more vigorously, and to study new ways to reform and restrict the H-1B system.

The ban is also expected to levy a blow to the tech industry, as many foreign nationals immigrate on the H-1B visa.

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The reality of this large, complex program that's touched by several federal bureaucracies, including the departments of Labor, State, and Homeland Security, depends on where you look, and who's looking.

The visa program in question allows employers to hire highly skilled foreign workers in specialty occupations.

A senior administration official explained the rationale behind the change by saying many of those visas going to contract workers from overseas force wages down in the USA or completely wipe out positions for Americans.

Rigorously using all of its existing authority to initiate investigations of H-1B program violators.

Yet in a briefing paper given to reporters, the White House says such critics fail "to take into account" that helping American contractors would boost American incomes, raise tax revenue and help revive US industry. Which is very different than I think how most people think of the H-1B program. She notes that the increased focus on fraud and abuse is no surprise, as the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service and Department of Justice sent out messages earlier this month signaling stepped-up scrutiny.

Critics argue that the order will make materials for transportation and other public works projects more expensive and could even derail Trump's proposed $1 trillion infrastructure plan.