EB-5 visa program, a program of the USCIS, has helped and is helping several foreign investors to obtain US Green Cards. This visa program permits foreign nationals who invest $500,000 or more and whose investment creates at least 10 full time jobs in America, to become permanent residents of the United States. This is a fast-growing visa program that has drawn the attention of several foreign investors. Investors who take part in this program are granted Green Cards in exchange for their investment.
Most of these investors are much concerned about Green Cards and not about the returns. US producers who are looking for new sources of capital and the foreign nationals who are looking forward to become lawful residents of the United States are benefited by this program. That is because the EB-5 visa program provides cheap financing to the US producers who have trouble finding capital and they pay very less returns to the foreign investors and they do not go for traditional financing as they need pay higher returns, in that case. The bipartisan senators who are drafting immigration proposals also say that they are planning to expand existing visa programs like the EB-5 visa program that would boost the economy of the United States.
However, many say that this program is permitting the foreign investors to buy US citizenship and that it is also helping foreign investors to overtake other applicants who have been waiting for years. This program was created in 1990 and it began in 1992 and was shut down between 1998 and 2003. More than 29,000 foreigners have obtained US Green Cards through this program and they have invested more than $6.8 billion and have created more than 50,000 new jobs in the country.
More than 70 percent of the investment visas are being issued to the investors from China, India, Korea, the United Arab Emirates, Canada and Taiwan. Currently, the USCIS takes around one year to process an EB-5 visa application and in order to shorten the processing times, USCIS has added economists and business lawyers to help the USCIS officers to review complex EB-5 applications. Many businesses in the United Sates, including the hotel industry are enthusiastic as the Marriott International and Hilton Worldwide have raised more than $500 million and $100 million, respectively, in EB-5 capital. This EB-5 visa program has also benefited recruiters and middlemen who connect the investors and the US developers.