The Congress of the USA, on the eve of the expiration of the EB-5 Regional Center project, issued a new authorization to postpone the project in the short term.
This authorization will now end on December 22, 2017. After a series of temporary extensions and lengthy negotiations conducted within the National Assembly and the US Office of Immigration. about changes to the EB-5 program, potential investors are increasingly uncertain about the visa program. Given that there have been a lot of changes in the proposals, it is also difficult for investors to try to anticipate the results.
Short-term delays have recently been implemented and legislative and suspension bills have steadily increased, causing uncertainty. The result is not realistic for many investors in Mainland China. For this reason, Congress is expected to pass legislation (including visas for project investors in newly designated objective employability areas.) These reserves are potentially good news, and have caused disinformation among EB-5 visa applicants.
In the current legislation for every 10,000 3000 visas are for investors of the Regional Center EB-5 project. Once the total reaches 10000 EB-5 of annual immigrants, countries with excess applications their investors will have to wait until the next fiscal year. Currently, China is still the only country that needs EB-5 visas. Although the United States reported that Chinese citizens have to face three years of waiting, in view of the large number of applications, the real time may be from 7 to 10 years. This makes for the Chinese mainland the possibility of booking visas is undoubtedly good news. But not all investors will benefit from possible changes in this area.
Proposals by Leahy and Grassley
We have learned that currently Senator Cornyn and another senator are proposing to review the EB-5, however only the fundamental principles of the legislation are examined. Not admitting any bill. Senator Grassley had previously proposed «the United States Employment and Investment Promotion Reform Act 2017, which allows for a proposal related to the reservation of visas for priority urban and rural projects. Specifically, his proposal consisted in reserving 7.5% of the visa quota for projects for the urban area and 7.5 for the rural areas for priority projects. Finally one year later it rose to 15%.
Although the reform project proposes to alleviate the waiting list for visas of investment issues faced by Chinese investors, we must point out that it is not clear what impact it will have on investors who have submitted I-526 applications and if the quotas reserved are apply retroactively to waiting applications. The new bill, is expected to include a waiting period that will be imposed before the new regulations come into force. During the waiting period, it will be understood that the application of the law, projects and / or key investments can be favored. The Chinese continental investors, try to predict whether the provisions of the immigration policy of the United States can be favorable. Taking into account the rapid evolution of the rules, it is recommended that investors hire a legal adviser.
Investors in the application of I-526 and EB-5 are concerned that the changes affect visa applications. They wonder if it is possible to obtain reservations for visas. They ask how applicants are chosen to benefit from other issues related to the future of visa reservations. Under the current legislation, the priority reserve date for EB-5 visas is not yet feasible, it is not clear if this will change. The Grassley / Leahy project did not make changes in this regard, therefore they do not know if it is necessary to resubmit the application.
In general, negotiations in the Senate have given hope to hundreds of investors from mainland China who were waiting for the opportunity to submit applications for EB-5 visas not subject to the 7/10 year wait. Even if the proposal is approved, more travel will be needed. All these aspects may remain unclear until immigration from the United States is involved. Particularly for investors from mainland China who are trying to predict future regulations. Investors should consult well qualified immigration legal advisors before continuing with their processes.