Businesses call for more U.S. visas

Oct. 5, 2004 at 9:37 AM

WASHINGTON, Oct. 5 (UPI) -- The U.S. Chamber of Commerce Tuesday urged Congress to allow more foreign professionals to obtain U.S. work visas.

The government has set a cap on the number of H1-B visas to be issued next fiscal year, but that will severely curtail the number of qualified professionals U.S. businesses will be able to hire, the chamber said.

"Congressional limits on H1-B visas are set without regard to the economic or competitiveness needs of our country," said the chamber's vice president for immigration, Randel Johnson. Visas "should not stand in the way of the ability of U.S. employers to hire foreign nationals with graduate degrees from American universities," he added.

The chamber argued that allowing qualified foreigners educated in U.S. universities in particular was necessary to keep U.S. businesses competitive internationally.

The chamber is the world's largest business federation.

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