On May 29, 2020, U.S. President Donald Trump issued a proclamation that takes effect at 12:00pm EDT on June 1, 2020. The proclamation prevents certain graduate students and researchers who are nationals of the People’s Republic of China (“PRC” or “China”) from entering the United States pursuant to an F or J nonimmigrant visa if they have ever been funded by, enrolled in, employed by, or involved in research for an entity that supports the PRC’s “Military-Civil Fusion” strategy.
On May 29, 2020, U.S. President Donald Trump issued a proclamation that will prevent certain graduate students and researchers who are nationals of the People’s Republic of China (“PRC” or “China”) from entering the United States (U.S.) pursuant to an F or J nonimmigrant visa if they have ever been funded by, enrolled in, employed by, or involved in research for an entity that supports the PRC’s “Military-Civil Fusion” strategy.1 The objective of the proclamation is to reduce the risk that U.S. technologies and intellectual property may be acquired and diverted to advance Chinese military interests.
The proclamation takes effect at 12:00pm EDT on June 1, 2020.
Employers and educational institutions with students, faculty, researchers, and trainees who are PRC nationals and covered under this proclamation should monitor the status of this situation, as any change in the visa validity of these individuals could have consequences on their ability to enter or re-enter the United States.
The F-1 Student Visa allows foreign nationals to enter the U.S. to engage in studies at an accredited college, university, seminary, conservatory, or other academic institutions.
The J-1 Exchange Visitor Program allows foreign research scholars, professors, and trainees to study, research, consult, train, and gain exposure to U.S. culture as they gain valuable experience in their chosen occupational field.
F-1 and J-1 visa holders are allowed to visit the U.S. for periods ranging from a few weeks to several years. Both visa programs remain popular among foreign students and American institutions, as they promote cultural exchange between countries and facilitate education, research, and skill development.
Chinese nationals not impacted by the proclamation include:
— Undergraduate students;
— Lawful permanent residents of the U.S.;
— Spouses of a U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident;
— Members of the U.S. Armed Forces and the spouse or child of a member of the U.S. Armed Forces;
— Those whose travel falls within the scope of section 11 of the United Nations Headquarters Agreement or who would otherwise be allowed entry into the U.S. pursuant to obligations under certain international agreements;
— Individuals studying or conducting research in fields involving information that would not contribute to China’s “Military-Civil Fusion” strategy (note that these fields are not specified in the proclamation);
— Persons seeking entry to further important U.S. law enforcement objectives;
— Those seeking entry in the national interest of the U.S.; and
— Individuals seeking asylum, refugee status, withholding of removal, or protection under the Convention Against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment, consistent with the laws of the United States.
The proclamation shall remain in effect until terminated by the president.
The secretary of state maintains discretion to revoke visas of those who are currently in the U.S. pursuant to an F or J visa and meet the suspension criteria. Typically, visa revocations are handled by the U.S. Department of State. A revoked visa is no longer valid and, therefore, may not be used to seek admission to the United States.
The proclamation also directs U.S. immigration authorities to review both nonimmigrant and immigrant visa programs within 60 days and recommend other measures that the president may implement to reduce the risk of U.S. technology and intellectual property being acquired and used to further Chinese military capabilities.
The New York Times reports that there are approximately 360,000 Chinese students in the U.S., and visa revocations could affect at least 3,000 of these students, some of whom are working on critical projects.2
2 See E. Wong and J.E. Barnes, “U.S. to Expel Chinese Graduate Students With Ties to China’s Military Schools,” The New York Times (online), May 28, 2020 at: https://www.nytimes.com/2020/05/28/us/politics/china-hong-kong-trump-student-visas.html . (Note that this is a 3rd party (non-governmental, non-KPMG) website. Providing this link does not represent an endorsement of this website by KPMG.)
* Please note that KPMG LLP (U.S.) does not provide any immigration services or legal services. However, KPMG Law LLP in Canada can assist clients with U.S. immigration matters.
The information contained in this newsletter was submitted by the KPMG International member firm in Canada.
To subscribe to GMS Flash Alert, fill out the subscription form.
© 2020 KPMG LLP, a Canada limited liability partnership and a member firm of the KPMG network of independent member firms affiliated with KPMG International, a Swiss entity. All rights reserved.
KPMG International Cooperative (“KPMG International”) is a Swiss entity. Member firms of the KPMG network of independent firms are affiliated with KPMG International. KPMG International provides no client services. No member firm has any authority to obligate or bind KPMG International or any other member firm vis-à-vis third parties, nor does KPMG International have any such authority to obligate or bind any member firm.
Flash Alert is an Global Mobility Services publication of KPMG LLPs Washington National Tax practice. The KPMG logo and name are trademarks of KPMG International. KPMG International is a Swiss cooperative that serves as a coordinating entity for a network of independent member firms. KPMG International provides no audit or other client services. Such services are provided solely by member firms in their respective geographic areas. KPMG International and its member firms are legally distinct and separate entities. They are not and nothing contained herein shall be construed to place these entities in the relationship of parents, subsidiaries, agents, partners, or joint venturers. No member firm has any authority (actual, apparent, implied or otherwise) to obligate or bind KPMG International or any member firm in any manner whatsoever. The information contained in herein is of a general nature and is not intended to address the circumstances of any particular individual or entity. Although we endeavor to provide accurate and timely information, there can be no guarantee that such information is accurate as of the date it is received or that it will continue to be accurate in the future. No one should act on such information without appropriate professional advice after a thorough examination of the particular situation.