Building the innovative and globally competitive economy of the future requires a well-rounded and highly skilled workforce. Unfortunately, U.S. immigration policy today does not serve the U.S. economy, especially amid a critical shortage of workers.

America’s business leaders support employment-based immigration solutions that establish control over our borders and address our workforce needs, while upholding the rule of law and staying true to American values of welcoming immigrants. 

A Modern Approach to U.S. Immigration Policy

One of America’s great strengths is our ability to recruit hard working and skilled talent from around the world, which helps our companies to grow, create jobs and innovate. America will be at a competitive disadvantage if we fail to attract and retain workers in high demand fields including technology, farming, hospitality and construction. Pro-growth immigration reform that addresses our workforce needs, coupled with stronger border security, will help America build the economy of the future. 
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On Immigration Policy, Businesses and Workers Need Certainty

To maintain America’s place as the global hub of innovation, our immigration system must be modernized to recruit and retain top talent. This requires advancing policies that will help address our labor shortage and deliver certainty for businesses, workers and their families, including exempting STEM graduates with a master’s or Ph.D. degree from annual green card caps and protecting Dreamers and Afghan refugees from deportation.  

How the Future of American Immigration Can Impact the Economy

Providing new ideas and fresh perspectives, immigrants have always been a key part of America’s innovative spirit. A vast majority of economists and business leaders agree that immigration is a net positive for the U.S. economy. But, the system for welcoming these highly valuable workers is broken. This study explores how two potential policy scenarios—restricted and balanced—would impact the U.S. workforce and economy.

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Examining the immigration policies of Canada and Australia, Business Roundtable finds that U.S. immigration policy puts our nation at a competitive disadvantage. Both Canada and Australia: make it easier for international students and the spouses of visa holders to work than under U.S. policy; impose no annual limits on high-skilled temporary visas, which allows their systems to adapt to labor market needs; provide for much greater speed and transparency in processing business visas than the United States; and do a better job than the United States in addressing the demographic challenges of aging populations. Canada and Australia also use point-based systems that have been cited by some in the United States as a direction for its immigration system, but a closer examination presents many cautions for policymakers in considering a point-based system for the United States.

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