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India Complains to WTO over US Work Visa Rules

March 4, 2016
India says the US treats Indians working in certain sectors, including in the computer and related services industries,  less favorably than American citizens. 

GENEVA --India has filed a complaint with the World Trade Organization against Washington over U.S. rules on non-immigrant temporary working visas, the global trade body said on March 4.

India demanded consultations over measures slapping fees on some kinds of temporary work visas for the United States, as well as rules limiting how many visas are handed out.

India charged that the rules breached commitments Washington had made under international trade laws by treating Indians working in certain sectors, including in the computer and related services industries, within the United States less favorably than American citizens. 

Requesting consultations is the first step in trade disputes at the Geneva-based body, which polices respect for global trade accords in an effort to offer its 162 member economies a level playing field.

The United States has 10 days to respond to India's complaint, and the consultations between the two must begin within 30 days and generally cannot last longer than two months.

If they fail to reach an agreement, the complainant can request that a panel of experts be established to study the dispute and reach a verdict.

Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2016

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