National Association of Manufacturers’ President John Engler and Carl Schramm, president and CEO of the Kauffman Foundation, appear on CNBC’s “Street Signs” to discuss jobs creation, with a focus on entrepreneurship, innovation, productivity and the importance of foreign-born employees, education and visas.
Engler: “We are and should be the best country in the world to do research and Development. We ought to be the best country in the world to headquarter our company. We ought to make sure that all our policies align , whether those are tax policies or research and funding of the basic research in this country. Lot of exciting things on the horizon – We ought to be out in front.”
Schramm: “When it comes to creating jobs, it is these new high-tech jobs that actually do lots of on-the-jobs training that intensify the skills-set of our native born population, so in my ways it is a win-win situation to expand our citizenship with folks who are terribly talented. They’ll help us, we’ll help them.”
Schramm and the Kauffman Foundation support what they’re calling an “immigrant’s visa,” described in a Wall Street Journal editorial Tuesday, “Start-up Visas Can Jump-Start the Economy,” by investors Paul Kedrosky and Brad Feld:
In the 21st century … opportunities don’t wait for our interminable, employment-based visa programs. As a result rather than saying “Come and create jobs here” we, in effect, tell them to shove off. Come back when you have a few million in sales— at which point they will be rooted elsewhere and creating jobs somewhere else.
That needs to end now. Immigrants who come here to create companies create jobs. We need the jobs.
One good idea to make this process easier is to create a new visa for entrepreneurs, something that is increasingly being called by venture capitalists, entrepreneurs, and angel investors a “start-up visa.” It might work like this: If immigrant entrepreneurs want to start a company in the U.S. and are able to raise a moderate amount of money (perhaps as little as $125,000) from an accredited U.S.-based venture capital firm or qualified U.S.-based angel investors, we should let them start a company here. It could be a couple of founders with an idea—that’s it. We would give visas to the founders and welcome them in to our country.
One minor error at the start by Erin Burnett: Schramm is attending today’s White House Forum on Jobs and Economic Growth (Kauffman Foundation news release), but the NAM’s Engler is not. Manufacturing is well represented among the 130 attendees, however.
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