New US Policy Opens Up Opportunities for Entrepreneurs

The White House, working under the Obama administration, has passed a new policy that makes it a lot easier for all international entrepreneurs, including Pakistanis, to work with (or in) the United States.

The United States is considered the preferred playground for entrepreneurs all over the world. Not only is it home to some of the biggest startup-turned-companies in the world, but also houses investors with deep pockets, renowned incubators and a great competitive environment.

Since the past few months, the White House has been working with immigrant entrepreneurs, residing in the United States, to craft a new policy. The aim of it was to make it easier for foreign entrepreneurs to start businesses in the United States.

Previously, international entrepreneurs could get 2-5 years of US work visa for their startup under a number of strict conditions. Firstly, they had to have raised $350,000 from US investors or at least $100,000 from federal, state, or local government agencies.

It also required the startup in question to be formed within 3 years of submitting the application. Also, an entrepreneur must have had an ownership interest of at least 15 percent for initial parole, and 10 percent for re-parole. Lastly, the startup needed to create at least 10 full-time jobs for U.S. workers during the initial parole period (for 2 years of work visa).

Yesterday, they passed the final version of their “International Entrepreneurship Rule”. Some of the most notable changes that have been made are,

  • Reduction of the U.S investor requirement from $345,000 to $250,000
  • Reduction of renewal requirement from 10 jobs to 5 jobs
  • Reduction of equity requirement for ownership stake from 15% to 10%
  • Initial parole period increased from 2 years to 2.5 years
  • Eligible startups must have been formed within 5 years prior to application instead of 3 years

The policy will come into effect, starting on the 17th of July, 2017. You can read the full ruling over here.

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