Washington, D.C. On a business tour in the north of the country, President Lopez Obrador, referring to the immigration issue, made two requests to President Biden: The first, that the United States be able to hand out work visas to Central Americans and Mexicans based on an appreciation of your need for the workforce. President Obrador’s words were, “We should not rule out the possibility of issuing work visas in Central America, in our country. There is a fact, the workforce is required in the United States, the workforce in order for there to be growth in this great economy, so why is the flow of immigration not required, the provision of visas the work “. The second requirement is that the United States accelerate the investment of four billion dollars in the development of Latin America.
With regard to the first petition, there is a difference between the immigrant needs that the United States demands and those that AMLO refers to. What the saying says will not be fulfilled, be careful when asked, it will not be fulfilled. When AMLO talks about reinstalling a program similar to bracero, it is mainly referring to unskilled labor. There is a common belief that Trump restricted immigration to the United States in a general way. The numbers contradict that.
To be sure, the Trump administration has made it more difficult for many people to enter the United States. In fact, it was nearly impossible for people of some nationalities to travel to the United States, and resettlement of refugees had decreased dramatically. The policy path established through a restricted set of administrative and structural reforms could have major implications in the coming years if left unchanged. Legal changes and Trump’s rhetoric have led to a decrease in the number of applications for various immigration benefits that people may qualify for. However, if we analyze what happened to the H-2A visas (of unskilled workers) we can see that they have not stopped growing.
H-2A guest worker certifications reached 275,000 jobs in 2020, up 7 percent from 2019. The H-2A program has tripled since 2012. These types of visas are designed to immigrate to the United States to obtain temporary farm jobs. In this segment, which AMLO is interested in, that wasn’t the one President Biden focused on when talking about changes in immigration policy. President Biden plans to increase the number of visas for highly qualified people; H-1B and H-2B visas. He also proposes removing the limit on visas with quotas by country, which he hopes will benefit thousands of Indian professionals affected by some of the Trump administration’s immigration policies.
The H-1B visas, which expand the pool of highly skilled workers available in the United States, allow companies to hire foreign workers in specialized occupations that require theoretical or technical expertise. Tech companies rely on these types of visas to hire thousands of professionals from India and China.
The United States will require the immigrant workforce to boost its economic growth, and seek to attract qualified talent that is not the type of immigration AMLO refers to. At first I said, be careful when asking for a non-fulfillment, because the opportunities that will arise in the coming years in the United States will continue to encourage qualified Mexicans and Central Americans to emigrate. This will lead to more problems in the medium term for Mexico, and we continue to expel talent and not attract foreign talent either. Crossroads not very encouraging.