Secret Immigration Provisions of Trade Deal Revealed by Wikileaks

On June 3, WikiLeaks released parts of the TISA (Trade in Services Agreement), which is related to the TPP (Trans-Pacific Partnership) agreement. However, it is still a separate agreement and would be ratified separately. One of the TISA annexes/sub-sections they posted covers “Movement of Natural Persons”, linked here:

The focus of the Movement of Natural Persons annex appears to be business visitors and intra-company transfers. Most of the proposed agreement deals with standards for visa applications (30-day deadlines for processing, fee schedules, etc.). 

There are red flags throughout the document including:

  • A prohibition on “Economic Needs” testing, aka, labor market certification on B-1/L-1 visitors;
  • Creating a presumption that all spouses of L-1/B-1 visitors who stay for 12 months should also get visas;
  • The proposal appears to forbid mandatory face to face visa interviews as burdensome;
  • The language about “independent professionals” is very non-specific and it could be an attempt to allow self-petitioning;
  • Finally, the total impact is uncertain because even after the agreement is signed every signatory needs to publish a schedule of industry sectors that they will allow business visitors, contractual service professionals and independent professionals to enter.

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Content written by Federation for American Immigration Reform staff.


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  3. avatar

    The fact it is “secret” and written by large multinational corporations is reason enough to be scared as hell.

    • avatar
      Simply Sara on

      The fact that the Chamber of Commerce is involved usually means it is no good for anyone or anything that actually belongs to America. Chamber needs to stick to their “ribbon cutting” and be banned from any business deals, whatsoever, in their cities, in their States and in this country. Much of their support turns out to be “Nightmare on Main Street.!”

  4. avatar

    These “free trade” deals, including the 12 nation TPP, are all about more goodies for the global elite while the rest of us scramble for pennies. The American Action Network is funded by corporations and they are behind ads that are attacking as liberals and socialists those who don’t support these deals. They are trying to give cover to those Republicans who might vote for these pacts.

    The US Chamber of Commerce claims that TPP will “create American jobs”, when the fact is that all of these pacts so far have COST American jobs. Including the Korea free trade pact pushed by our president in 2012. At that time we had a small deficit with them and now our trade deficits with them have exploded. But don’t criticize our president about TPP. He takes it “personally”. How about the 80,000 people who lost their jobs? Think they took it “personally”?

    Joseph Stiglitz, the Nobel Economics winner in 2001, said this about the TPP: “What we’re doing is changing the legal structure for the United States..” He’s absolutely correct. It will let foreign corporations sue our federal and state governments if our laws interfere with their “right to make a profit”. If you’re for these deals, you are an internationalist, not an American.

    • avatar

      Perfectly stated Leland. This is corruption at the highest level. Politicians need to be prosecuted. Aesop said “We **** the petty thieves and appoint the great ones to office.”

      • avatar

        And the excuse is always “THIS trade deal is different” but they never are. If you look at the figures for all the major trade pacts we have passed, the deficits with those countries went way way up, while those we had no free trade pacts with pretty much stayed the same. It’s like the 1986 “one time” amnesty. How many times are we going to fall for the same lies? You know the saying, fool me once shame on you, fool me twice shame on me.