IIUSA supports continued research and analysis of EB-5 and other immigrant investor visa programs to increase understanding about these programs, their differences and benefits for investors and communities alike.
The Migration Policy Institute’s new report shows the U.S.’s EB-5 program to be balanced in a uniquely American way – where the job creating benefits of risk-based private investment are valued and – when sustained success is achieved – rewarded. The U.S. approach, which requires both investment and immigration risk, stands in contrast to arrangements based on a mere property purchase, found in struggling economies, and the zero interest government bonds for residence used in more developed countries that are more transactional than investment.
Another distinguishing feature of the U.S. program, not discussed in the report that helps it achieve greater economic impact than immigrant investor programs in other countries, is the requirement that investors meet residency requirements in the U.S. to maintain their permanent residency status. The American program was founded on the idea that foreign entrepreneurs who are truly “invested” in the U.S. tend to devote even more capital and energy over time, ultimately creating even more jobs than the minimum requirement resulting from their immigration-linked investment.
IIUSA agrees with the MPI report’s conclusion that greater discussion and legislation around the issues of compliance, appropriate regulations and program selectiveness should take place. Proper oversight, transparency, compliance with – and enforcement of – all applicable laws and regulations are essential to maintain the confidence of all stakeholders and ensure that the program continues bring capital and job creation to American communities.
The results of the EB-5 Program speak for themselves. While accounting for less than 1% of all visas issued by the U.S. annually, in FY2012 alone the Program accounted for $3.39 billion in gross domestic product, supported over 42,000 American jobs, and generated over $712 million in federal/state/local taxes – all at no cost to the taxpayer. With continued support and improvement, that economic contribution will continue to grow for the benefit of the communities and industries across the U.S.