According to Bread for the World Institute “Immigrants to the United States are more likely to start their own small businesses than people born in this country. While about 13 percent of the overall U.S. population and 16 percent of the labor force is foreign-born, 18 percent of all small business owners in the United States are immigrants 900,000 of them. Between 1990 and 2010 the number of small business owners grew from 3.1 to 4.9 million; 30 percent of that growth in new business people was from immigrants.”
Bread for the World Institute provides policy analysis on hunger and strategies to end it. The Institute educates opinion leaders, policy makers and the public about hunger in the United States and abroad. You may download the briefing paper here.
Entrepreneurs have two primary ways of coming to the United States to start a business, the E-2 Treaty Investor Visa and the EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program.
E-2 Treaty Investors
The E-2 nonimmigrant classification allows a national of a treaty country (a country with which the United States maintains a treaty of commerce and navigation) to be admitted to the United States when investing substantial capital in a U.S. business. Certain employees of such a person or of a qualifying organization may also be eligible for this classification.
EB-5 Immigrant Investor
The EB-5 visa provides a method of obtaining a green card for foreign nationals who invest money in the United States. To obtain the visa, individuals must invest $1,000,000 (or at least $500,000 in a Targeted Employment Area – high unemployment or rural area), creating or preserving at least 10 jobs for U.S. workers excluding the investor and their immediate family.