Newsletter January 2011-The USCIS Announces New Countries Eligible in the H-2A and H-2B Programs

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The USCIS Announces New Countries Eligible in the H-2A and H-2B Programs

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced today that the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), in consultation with the Department of State, has identified 53 countries whose nationals are eligible to participate in the H-2A and H-2B programs for the coming year.

The H-2A program allows U.S. employers to bring foreign nationals to the United States, on a temporary basis, to fill agricultural jobs, while the H-2B program allows U.S. employers to bring foreign nationals to the United States, again on a temporary basis, to fill nonagricultural jobs. USCIS approves petitions only for nationals of countries designated by the Secretary of Homeland Security as eligible to participate in the H-2A and H-2B programs.

As of Jan. 18, 2011, foreign nationals from the following countries are eligible to participate in the H-2A and H-2B programs: Argentina, Australia, Barbados, Belize, Brazil, Bulgaria, Canada, Chile, Costa Rica, Croatia, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Estonia, Ethiopia, Fiji, Guatemala, Honduras, Hungary, Ireland, Israel, Jamaica, Japan, Kiribati, Latvia, Lithuania, Macedonia, Mexico, Moldova, Nauru, The Netherlands, Nicaragua, New Zealand, Norway, Papua New Guinea, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Romania, Samoa, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Solomon Islands, South Africa, South Korea, Tonga, Turkey, Tuvalu, Ukraine, United Kingdom, Uruguay, and Vanuatu. Of these countries, the following were designated for the first time this year: Barbados, Estonia, Fiji, Hungary, Kiribati, Latvia, Macedonia, Nauru, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Slovenia, Solomon Islands, Tonga, Tuvalu, and Vanuatu.