EB-5 Visa Programme

What is EB-5 Programme?
It is popularly called as the ‘Green Card for greenback’ scheme. The EB-5 programme was created in 1990 with the approval of the US Congress — America’s highest law-making body.
  • It aims to boost the American economy by attracting investment from foreign nationals and generating employment for locals. In 1992, its scope was widened through an Immigrant Investor Programme, or the Regional Centre Programme.
  • Simply put, the programme grants rich entrepreneurs — as well as their spouses and unmarried children below the age of 21 — an opportunity to bag the coveted U.S. Green Card (or status of permanent residence) and Citizenship.
  • The programme is named EB-5 as it is the fifth preference category under the Employment-Based (EB) immigration visas. 
How this scheme operates?
  • Rich entrepreneurs have to invest in over half a million dollars in the U.S. and ensure that the funds help generate at least ten full-time jobs for qualified U.S. workers.
  • The visa, given in exchange for investments, grants the holder a conditional permanent residence status.
  • After two years, the conditions may be removed, when it becomes permanent green card that can lead to citizenship, provided it has resulted in the creation of 10 jobs.
Why on news? US is thinking about abolishing this scheme as number of applicants has risen sharply in past few years.

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