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Chinese demand for green cards on the rise

Many people in Texas may not be aware of the growing rate of Chinese immigrants to this country. New information shows, however, that wealthy Chinese citizens are causing serious strain on a U.S. program that allows individuals to receive green cards in exchange for large investments. The visa program, known as the EB-5, is increasingly popular among Chinese nationals who now make up over 80 percent of applicants.

The EB-5 program requires visa applicants to provide at least $500,000 for a business venture in America. Also, any entrepreneurial projects must generate at least 10 jobs in the U.S. in order to qualify. Only 10,000 such visas are granted each year. Now, Chinese applicants are apparently worried about visa availability.

Officials say that the immigration petition program is particularly desirable for Chinese nationals who want to access new opportunities. Green cards can allow family members to attend college in the U.S., and Chinese residents are often eager to escape growing pollution problems in their home country. The cost of an EB-5 visa is low in comparison to other nations' programs; Australia, for instance, requires a $4.5 million investment in order to receive such permission.

Although critics say that the program is simply a way for the global financial elite to effectively purchase U.S. citizenship, there is no sign that interest in the program is waning. Texas residents who want to learn more about EB-5 opportunities may benefit from consulting an immigration attorney in the area. These professionals may provide additional information about legal rights and options for foreign nationals interested in green card eligibility.

Source: KETK, "Rich Chinese overwhelm U.S. visa program" CNN, Mar. 26, 2014

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