Trump to world: Forget moving to America to do a startup

International Entrepreneur Rule paused for at least 9 months, probably forever


US president Donald Trump's America First slogan has been extended to StartupLand after the Department of Homeland Security announced a delay to the implementation of the International Entrepreneur Rule, aka the “Startup visa”.

The Rule was due to come into effect next week and would have allowed entrepreneurs with stateside backing of at least US$250k to move to the Land Of The Free to start a company. But on Monday US time the Department announced (PDF) two things:

  • A delay to the Rule's commencement, pushing it out until March 14th, 2018
  • An intention to “obtain comments from the public regarding a proposal to rescind the rule”

The Department says the decision is based on its reading of Section 11(d) of Executive Order 13767, Border Security and Immigration Enforcement Improvements, the third Executive Order issued by president Trump. That section reads, in part, that the Department's secretary should only grant entry to the United States for “urgent humanitarian reasons or a significant public benefit derived”. Entrepreneurs don't meet either of those criteria.

StartupLand hates this change, as is felt it will deprive the US of talent and energy.

But it fits well with Trump's America First agenda and the president's liking for replacing Obama-era ideas. And this Rule was a very late Obama idea: he floated it in mid-2016 and passed it on the second-last day of his presidency. ®

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