labels: economy - general, it news
Parts of new immigration proposal opposed by US businessesnews
26 May 2007

Los Angeles: Farmers and businesses reliant on migrant labour have opposed an immigration reform bill proposed to be passed by parliament.

The Bill requires immigrant workers to go back home for a year. US businesses, reliant on immigrants, have long pushed for reforms to address their need for labour.

Across the US, industries like carpet manufacturing, farming, poultry processing, meat-packing, construction, restaurants and hotels depend heavily on low-or unskilled illegal immigrants.

Technology companies, meanwhile, increasingly look outside the US to find engineers, programmers and other highly skilled workers, who are here legally, mostly on temporary work visas.

However, the legislation would also grant legal status to the estimated 12 million illegal immigrants already in the US, allowing them to seek permanent legal residency or citizenship. They would be subject to a $5,000 fee and fines, and the heads of households would have to return to their country of origin temporarily. The reforms also call for a guest worker programme that would issue some 400,000 visas a year for largely low-skill immigrants seeking employment for two years.

The reform measure would create a point system that rewards people with advanced degrees and special skills.

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Parts of new immigration proposal opposed by US businesses