President Biden issued an Executive Order on October 30 in a bid to promote innovation and attract artificial intelligence (AI) talent to the shores of America. The “Executive Order on the Safe, Secure and Trustworthy Development and Use of Artificial Intelligence” provides new guidelines to protect the privacy of citizens and safeguard US national security.
The EO also seeks to attract foreign talent from around the globe in the AI space to balance the needs of technology companies in this dynamic AI age. More specifically, the EO seeks to streamline processing times of visa petitions and applications, including by ensuring timely availability of visa appointments for the purposes of work, study, or research in AI or other critical and emerging technologies. The EO directs the relevant government agencies to consider implementing a domestic visa renewal program so that AI skilled employees can continue working without interruption. Furthermore, the EO calls for the establishment of a program to identify and attract top AI talent and for the review and initiation of policy changes to immigration pathways (e.g., O-1A, EB-1, EB-2) for experts in AI and critical and emerging technologies.
These immigration- specific directives in the EO highlight the Biden administration’s objective to attract and retain foreign talent in the AI and critical emerging technology space in order for America to stay at the forefront. The measures set forth in the EO, if put into action could make certain areas of immigration more efficient. Visas such as the H1-B, O-1, F1, and Green Cards could be obtained faster by professionals in the AI and critical and emerging technology fields. There could also be a possibility of modification of the rules of the EB-1 (B) and EB-2 categories to prioritize AI workers.
D&A will continue to monitor policies and proposals on immigration and provide updates as and when available.
This article has been written by Zeenat Phophalia, Esq. Of Counsel, Davies & Associates, India Office.
Zeenat Phophalia is qualified to practice law in New York, United Kingdom and India. She practices in the area of U.S. immigration law with a focus on business immigration, and has represented corporate clients including large and medium sized companies and startups across sectors such as IT, consulting, consumer goods, manufacturing and telecommunications.