Stuart Anderson at Forbes succinctly points out that the Trump Administration’s H1-B visa restrictions won’t create new U.S. jobs, but move sectors of the economy outside of the U.S. where workers are not restricted by their nationality:
Government officials and others who ignore or won’t concede that the labor market is global seem to believe, despite the evidence, that companies won’t send work outside the United States in response to H-1B visa restrictions. “Foreign affiliate employment increased as a direct response to increasingly stringent restrictions on H-1B visas,” according to firm-level data in important research by Britta Glennon, an assistant professor at the Wharton School of Business. “[A]ny policies that are motivated by concerns about the loss of native jobs should consider that policies aimed at reducing immigration have the unintended consequence of encouraging firms to offshore jobs abroad.”
“IT outsourcing has evolved from relatively simple tasks to much more complex software development,” notes the Wall Street Journal. “[Pennsylvania-based] EPAM developers, scattered across more than 160 offices in multiple time zones using Microsoft’s collaboration software, Teams, routinely work on a single project. For example, developers in Hungary, Belarus, Ukraine, and the U.S. are working on booking platforms for a major online travel company.”
What will be the impact of the new H-1B regulation? “All of the changes in the regulation are likely to be resisted by employers as inconsistent with the statute and economically harmful,” said William Stock. “If allowed to go into effect, the regulation will continue the current trend of employers sending high-value technology work offshore because of policies from this administration that are keeping and pushing key personnel outside the United States.” [“Regulation To Restrict H-1B Visas Moves Toward Final Step“]
More importantly, as Robert Tracinski argued in Restrictions on “H-1B” Visas Punish Ability and Trample the Rights of Employer and Employee:
The irrational premise behind our nation’s immigration laws is that a native-born American has a “right” to a particular job, not because he has earned it, but because he was born here. To this “right,” the law sacrifices the employer’s right to hire the best employees — and the immigrant’s right to take a job that he deserves. To put it succinctly, initiative and productiveness are sacrificed to sloth and inertia.
The “American dream” is essentially the freedom of each individual to rise as far as his abilities take him. The opponents of immigration, however, want to repudiate that vision by turning America into a privileged preserve for those who want the law to set aside jobs for them — jobs they cannot freely earn through their own efforts.
The quotas on H-1B visas — along with all other visas — should not just be expanded; they should be eliminated. Any immigrant who wants to come to America in search of a better life should be let in — and any employer who wants to hire him should be free to do so. Anything less would be un-American.