Immigrants Founded Over Half Of The Startups Valued At $1 Billion Or More

They paved the path for a bunch of new jobs.

In May, the current administration proposed rolling back an Obama-era program, the International Entrepreneur Rule, which allowed immigrants and foreign entrepreneurs to build startups in the United States without receiving traditional visas.  Critics of the program have argued that it could put American workers at economic risk, but, as Business Insider observed, immigrants founded 51 percent of the startups valued at $1 billion or more in 2016. These startups in turn created over 33,000 jobs.

The International Entrepreneur Rule allowed high-growth startup founders a temporary 5-year visa.  The Department of Homeland Security filed a proposal to remove the program in late May. According to the Biz Journal, the DHS described the program was to "too expensive, too subjective,  and too complex." 

Proponents of the program worry that rescinding it will prevent a future tech founder following in the footsteps of Elon Musk, Sergey Brin, and Garrett Camp from building their startups in the United States.

And, as noted by Biz Journal, 43 percent of Fortune 500 companies were founded by immigrants.

Cover image via Shutterstock / Efired.

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