US set to make immigration faster, easier for AI professionals. How will this help Indians?

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In a major move to mitigate the inherent risks associated with the widespread adoption of artificial intelligence, the United States government has taken a monumental step by issuing what is being hailed as a “landmark Executive Order” (EO).

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This EO is geared towards harnessing the immense potential of AI while simultaneously implementing safeguards to manage its associated risks. In this comprehensive order, not only does the government introduce fresh guidelines to safeguard the privacy of its citizens, but it also seeks to create a welcoming environment to attract global AI talent.

A key facet of this move is to drive innovation and lure top-notch AI professionals to the United States, reported the New York Times. To achieve this, the EO capitalises on existing legal provisions, aiming to expand the opportunities for highly skilled immigrants and non-immigrants with AI expertise to study, reside, and work in the country.

The EO places a strong emphasis on modernising and streamlining the visa application process, interviews, and reviews, in a bid to facilitate the smooth entry and integration of AI experts into the United States.

Also read | Data Lab | India and AI: Are we ahead of the curve?

What’s the benefit in this for Indians?

One notable consequence of this move is its potential to benefit Indian IT professionals in America. It is anticipated that this EO could lead to faster processing of various visas such as H1B, O-1, F1, and Green Cards for those pursuing studies and employment in AI fields.

Furthermore, the eligibility criteria for EB1-B and EB2 visas may undergo changes to prioritise workers in the AI domain.

In a blog post, Anil Gupta, a recognised immigration expert in the United States, suggests that this executive order may not necessarily result in additional green cards or country-specific benefits.

Therefore, it is proposed that the USCIS (United States Citizenship and Immigration Services) might create a more lenient or distinct category within EB1-B to accommodate individuals working in the AI sector.

The new guidelines also stress on the need to assess, formulate, and publish policies that support foreign nationals employed in the AI field, facilitating their transition to green card status.

Additionally, the EO encourages the establishment of new programs and charges the Secretary with the task of identifying and attracting top AI talent from across the globe, spanning universities, research institutions, and the private sector.

Also watch | ‘AI to impact all sectors in India,’ says Prof B Ravindran in conversation with WION

 

To further simplify immigration for AI workers, the EO proposes the implementation of a domestic visa renewal programme, designed to ensure that qualified applicants, including highly skilled AI professionals and experts in critical and emerging technologies, can continue their work in the United States without unnecessary interruptions.

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