India to take US visa complaint to WTO
New Delhi, May 9 (IANS) India will lodge complaints with the World Trade Organisation (WTO) against the "discriminatory" increase in visa fee by the US which is hurting Indian IT companies like TCS, Infosys and Wipro, Minister of State for Commerce and Industry Jyotiraditya M. Scindia said Wednesday.
"Department of Commerce proposes to seek consultations with the US under the Dispute Settlement Understanding of the WTO," Scindia told lawmakers.
The minister said the US government's move to hike visa fee was prima facie discriminatory for Indian companies.
The United States under the Emergency Border Security Supplemental Appropriations Act, 2010 sharply hiked fee for H1B and l1 visas, commonly used by the IT companies to bring workers to the US from outside.
Visa fees are increased for applicants of those companies which employ more then 50 persons in the United States or have more than 50 percent of their employees admitted on non-immigrant visas, popularly called "50/50 rule".
"Indian firms including TCS, Infosys, Wipro and Mahindra Satyam which fall in the '50/50' rule appear liable to pay higher visa fees," Scindia said in a written reply to a question in the Rajya Sabha.
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