Departments are being asked to offer changes so that H-1B visas are awarded to the ‘most-skilled or highest-paid applicants,’ administration officials, who spoke on the condition of anonymity despite the president’s frequent criticism of the use of anonymous sources, said.
The White House said the program is currently undercutting American workers by bringing in cheaper labor and said some tech companies are using it to hire large numbers of workers and hold down wages.
Administration officials said the order also seeks to strengthen requirements that American-made products be used in certain federal construction projects, as well as in various federal transportation grant-funded projects.
The officials said the commerce secretary will review how to close loopholes in enforcing the existing rules and provide recommendations to the president.
The order specifically asks the secretary to review waivers of these rules that exist in free-trade agreements. The administration said that if the waivers are not benefiting the United States they will be ‘renegotiated or revoked.’