Indian IT companies received less than 10% of H1B visas up for grabs in the last fiscal year ending on 31st March 2020.
Out of 85,000 visas issued by the US government, Indian IT companies managed to win barely 6,663, according to India’s Ministry of Information Technology.
“Around 14 large IT firms from the country competed for the visa”, Sanjay Dhotre, Junior IT Minister at India’s federal government, told parliament in a written reply.
He admitted that the increasingly US tightening immigration system would no doubt complicate the business operations of Indian IT firms. “However, we cannot estimate the true cost of the visa restrictions right away,” he added.
India and the United States have long squabbled over the restrictions. In 2017, India brought a lawsuit against the US government at the World Trade Organisation (WTO). The case is still under trial.
Besides the government, NASSCOM, the country’s IT lobby group, has also spent millions in its bid to persuade the US government not to restrict the movement of IT professionals.
The restrictions, combined with the high cost of visa fees, have made it extremely difficult for India’s IT companies to serve their US clients, who account for the bulk of their revenue.