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U.S. EB-5 Program

Trump Delays Revised Immigration Order and Travel Ban

2 March 2017

Trump Delays Revised Immigration Order and Travel Ban
On Tuesday, President Donald Trump delivered his first address to the United States Congress. His speech was uncharacteristically devoid of aggressive rhetoric surrounding immigration policy and instead carried a softer tone that espoused themes of unity for “a new chapter in American Greatness,” while claiming “the time for trivial fights is behind us.” Despite Trump’s loftier message to the American people, the now-infamous immigration ban that unsuccessfully barred U.S. Green Card holders, Syrian refugees, and seven Muslim-majority nations from entry remains a pressing issue in the scope of international foreign policy. While the ban was ultimately halted by the U.S. federal judiciary system, the Trump administration made it clear a revised executive order would be introduced in the following weeks.

Trump’s softer approach in his speech to Congress was well-received, garnering favorable commentary from major U.S. news sources. The Trump administration’s revised immigration ban, which was slated to be introduced this Wednesday, the 2nd of March, has since been delayed in light of positive media coverage and improved public opinion ratings. What’s known about the new immigration ban is that it will contain major changes to its former policies, including the exemption of current U.S. Green Card and visa holders (legal residents). However, those close to the revised immigration ban have stated the executive order has not been finalized and may be subject to change.  At present, these changes include:
  • ​The new executive order will explicitly state that legal U.S. permanent residents will not be included in the ban.
  • In addition, those who hold valid visas issued by the U.S. immigration authorities will also be excluded from any ban.
  • The exemption of language prioritizing religious minorities seeking refugee status in the U.S.
  • Citizens from Iraq will be excluded from any ban.
While these modifications are certainly a relief for the millions of legal residents in the U.S., the new immigration ban has yet to address immigration hopefuls seeking entry, such as refugees or foreign skilled-workers, investors, and business-minded men and women.

If the Trump administration maintains its hard-line approach to immigration, the reality is that America faces losing its economic support and competitive edge that immigrants provide a nation. The foreign capital, skills, and innovation that immigration cultivates are features that Canada has heavily advocated since the introduction of Trump’s now-defunct immigration ban in January.

For would-be applicants to the U.S. EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program, a program designed to attract foreign capital and create jobs for American workers, obtaining Canadian permanent residency may now be a better prospect. Whether or not the Trump administration will grant exemptions for current U.S. EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program applicants (or those who wish to apply in the future) remains unclear, and a growing number of foreign nationals are redirecting their immigration inquiries—and potential capital—north of the border. According to statistics from the Bureau of Economic Analysis and U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, foreign nationals wishing to establish, expand, or acquire U.S. businesses invested USD $384 billion into the American economy in 2015, with USD $437 million attributed to U.S. EB-5 investors alone. However, total U.S. EB-5 investments fell to USD $381 million by 2016, with total foreign investments predicted fall substantially for 2017. From an economic standpoint, the Trump administration’s immigration policies could potentially be disastrous if foreign investors and entrepreneurs opt for Canada in light of U.S. immigration uncertainty.

Businesses and employers in Canada, on the other hand, have since increased efforts to attract foreign investors, entrepreneurs, and skilled workers from around the world as a result of Trump’s immigration ban. Can the U.S. economy risk losing billions of dollars and competitive edge in the global market? As the world anxiously anticipates Trump’s next move for the future of U.S. immigration, Canada isn’t waiting around for the answer.

For more information on Canadian immigration programs, please click here.

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