Visas and Borders #73

Deepnews Digest #73

Visas and Borders

Editor: Christopher Brennan
Visas get you everywhere you want to be, though getting one is becoming much harder. This week’s Digest explores the broad subjects of visas and borders, which have been impacted by everything from the coronavirus isolating countries in Europe to the Trump administration’s decision to crack down on the H1-B visa program that brings many workers into the US. Here are some in-depth articles that dive into the details, all gathered with the Deepnews Scoring Model.
This Digest was inspired by two of’s new offerings: newsletters on Education and Travel that will now come out on Tuesdays and Thursdays, respectively. You can add them in the “My Newsletters” section of your account or when you sign up for a free trial. If you want to tell us your thoughts or suggest another topic, it would mean a lot to us if you could spend less than 2 minutes to take our survey.
Published every Friday

Foreign Policy ($)

Japan Radically Increased Immigration — and No One Protested

To cope with demographic challenges and labor shortages, Japan’s right-wing government has boosted immigration. How did it avoid the political backlash plaguing the West?

Read more


This family was given 35 days to leave Australia because one son has Down syndrome

Ciaran Lund has always loved music. When he was younger, growing up in the UK, it was all about Freddie Mercury.

Read more

Editor’s Note:

Beyond the visas even being available, the documents often also come with restrictions. Here SBS follows the story of a family that moved from England to Australia, but was rejected for a visa due to a health requirement. – Christopher Brennan, Editor


Families separated by new Trump visa order frantic for answers

A new immigration order issued by Trump has barred the entry of holders of certain temporary work visas

Read more

Economic Times (Times of India)

H1B visa curb: India to seek discussion on work visa suspension by US

Delhi: India will seek a separate discussion on the suspension of work visas, ordered by US President Donald Trump on Monday, independent of the trade negotiations between the two countries, top government officials told ET.

Read more

Texas Tribune

Texas’ unemployment rate is high, but Rio Grande Valley’s is even higher

Sandra Santos has been doing everything she can to find a job since she was laid off in mid-March from working in the billing and collections department of an ambulance service in the Rio Grande Valley.

Read more

Stuff NZ

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern advised Kiwis overseas for extended period should pay quarantine costs

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern was advised returning Kiwis, who have been away from New Zealand for an extended period, should bear the brunt of quarantine costs.

Read more


Foreign asylum seekers in Japan face battle for survival in time of coronavirus

As the effects of the novel coronavirus pandemic ripple across Japan, foreign asylum seekers are among the hardest hit, seeing the support available to them curtailed just as times get tougher during a process that can take years and rarely results in success.

Read more

The Conversation

Nepal is caught in the middle of India-China border tensions

A tense military standoff between China and India over a disputed border area in the Himalayas has put much of the region on edge. Not least in Nepal, which has its own ongoing land dispute with India and where concern is mounting that the India-China power play could damage its territorial integrity.

Read more

Editor’s Note:

This one follows up on our Digest from last week on the India-China border clash, though from the perspective of Nepal. Promod Tandan of the University of Westminster grapples with the situation in terms of issues such as history and trade. – Christopher Brennan, Editor

New York Times

E.U. May Bar American Travelers as It Reopens Borders, Citing Failures on Virus

European Union officials are racing to agree on who can visit the bloc as of July 1 based on how countries of origin are faring with new coronavirus cases. Americans, so far, are excluded, according to draft lists seen by The New York Times.

Read more


Trump’s New Immigration Pause Will Kill Prospects of a Quick Economic Recovery

Banning foreign workers will result in the outsourcing of jobs from America.

Read more

Brookings Institute

University finances and COVID-19: Different schools, different risks

COVID-19 puts higher-ed finances at risk. For some universities, revenue shortfalls are going to be a pain — for other universities the shortfall may be a disaster. Public universities face three major sources of revenue risk: hospital revenues, tuition (both from overall enrollment and with special attention to enrollment of out-of-state students), and state funding. The bottom line here is going to be that the exposure of different schools to these risks is extremely variable. When it comes to the financial consequences of COVID-19, there’s no one-size-fits-all impact.

Read more

Press Trust of India

US work visa suspension may hurt Indian IT Inc margins, further drive local hiring, say analysts

NEW DELHI: The US move to suspend work visas like H-1B till year-end may hurt the Indian IT industry’s margins as they will have to resort to more expensive local hiring to replace Indians, according to analysts.

Read more


Asia Bets on ‘Travel Bubbles,’ Closes Doors to Europe, America

BANGKOK – As Europe reopens its borders and begins to welcome the first tourists in the COVID-19 world, most countries in Asia and Oceania have maintained a cautious approach and are only considering air “travel bubbles” that join the nations that have largely controlled the virus.

Read more

The New Humanitarian

Massive fall in remittances hits hard in Venezuela

Arguably, Nelson Diaz has worked to support his mother since he was just two years old. When his father was killed in a car accident in Maracaibo, a city in northwestern Venezuela, he took to the streets with his five older brothers, selling empanadas to help pay the bills.

Read more

Associated Press

Hundreds of Canadians could be affected by Trump’s decision to extend visa ban

WASHINGTON – Hundreds of Canadians working for technology companies or multinational corporations in the United States could be affected by a new ban that freezes the issuance of temporary work visas until the end of the year.

Read more

Japan Times

Japan ban threatens scholarships, admission and graduation for foreign students

Annamaria, a 27-year-old Slovakian student of environmental engineering at one of Japan’s top universities, worries she may not be able to submit her thesis before the deadline if she doesn’t return to Japan by September. When she left Japan on March 3 to visit her family during her spring break, Slovakia had no reported COVID-19 infections and Japan had not yet seen a major coronavirus outbreak, either.

Read more

Editor’s Note:

One major movement of people around the world is students. The topic of international students featured heavily in our Education newsletter this week, and here the Magdalena Osumi explores the effects of travel restrictions on students who want to call Japan home for their studies. – Christopher Brennan, Editor

The Atlantic

The Death of Cosmopolitanism

The coronavirus outbreak has emboldened defenders of the nation-state, in Europe and beyond.

Read more


EU Member States agree on interoperability specifications for national COVID-19 tracing apps

Digital tools such as mobile apps with warning and tracing functionalities that identify contacts of confirmed COVID-19 infections are said to be crucial for alerting users to the risk of infection and helping to interrupt infection chains. Such apps can help identifying more contacts and significantly accelerate the overall process of combating COVID-19. In a number of countries, both within the EU and globally, national authorities have announced or even already implemented Tracing Apps with different functionalities to support the fight against COVID-19 (e.g. immuni in Italy and Corona-Warn-App in Germany). With the on-going lifting of travel restrictions and border controls in the EU, Tracing Apps will take on greater importance in the upcoming summer travel season.

Read more

Quartz ($)

Lessons from an Indian-origin investment honcho who weathered H-1B curbs years ago

Donald Trump’s decision to suspend H-1B visas this year could be the end of the American dream for the over 202,000 Indian students in the US. But don’t throw in the towel just yet, says Anu Hariharan, a partner at early-stage startup investment major Y Combinator.

Read more

San Jose Mercury News

H-1B: Minimal effects expected from Trump’s visa suspensions, green card freeze

While the administration of President Donald Trump has said his order suspending many work visas and extending a green card freeze will save the jobs of more than a half-million Americans, immigration experts Tuesday pointed out that the coronavirus pandemic has already choked off the flow of foreign nationals to the U.S.

Read more


Over 88,000 OFWs in UAE seek aid, but funds only for 17,000

Data from the Philippine Overseas Labor Office in Dubai show that Filipino workers either lost their jobs, are on a no-work-no-pay arrangement, or have had their salaries cut

Read more

Editor’s Note:

Gulf countries such as the UAE and Qatar have grown rapidly because of the massive influxes of workers from other parts of the world, including the Philippines. Here Rappler, based in Manila, reports a piece on what is happening to their compatriots in places such as Dubai as work dries up. – Christopher Brennan, Editor

The New Republic

How to Fix America’s Broken Guest-Worker System

Trump’s suspension of visa programs is the perfect opportunity to reimagine them entirely.

Read more

The Conversation

Learning from experience: how our universities can turn the international student crisis into an opportunity

The impact of COVID-19 on New Zealand’s international education sector can hardly be overstated. Almost overnight, the global travel ban thwarted the plans of thousands of international students. Lecture theatres, halls of residence and private accommodations stood empty.

Read more


A tale of two pandemics

Two contrasting narratives concerning the impact of Covid-19 on the European Union are prevalent in Europe today. One depicts the epidemic as accelerating existing trends toward disintegration. The other sees the virus as enabling a leap forward toward greater integration.

Read more

The Diplomat

The Uneven Effects of US Restrictive Immigration Policy for Chinese Nationals

The Trump administration’s immigration will have negative — but uneven — effects on both the United States and China.

Read more