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Creating a Global Skill Partnership with Central America Using Existing US Visas


  • Helen Dempster

    (Center for Global Development)

  • Kristie De Pena

    (Niskanen Center)

  • Matthew La Corte

    (Niskanen Center)

  • Jeremy Neufeld

    (Institute for Progress)

  • Reva Resstack

    (Center for Global Development)

  • Cassandra Zimmer

    (Center for Global Development)


The United States is currently looking for ways to stimulate economic development within, and expand legal migration pathways from, El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras. At the same time, US employers are struggling with shortages in key “mid”-skill industries, such as health care, information and technology (IT), and tourism and hospitality. One way to meet both needs is to implement a Global Skill Partnership, a bilateral migration agreement which trains workers in needed skills within a country of origin prior to migration. A Global Skill Partnership between the US and El Salvador, Guatemala, or Honduras could be implemented within existing visa categories—the Exchange Visitor Program (EVP), the H-2B visa, and Schedule A Employment-based green cards—without needing congressional approval.

Suggested Citation

  • Helen Dempster & Kristie De Pena & Matthew La Corte & Jeremy Neufeld & Reva Resstack & Cassandra Zimmer, 2022. "Creating a Global Skill Partnership with Central America Using Existing US Visas," Policy Papers 272, Center for Global Development.
  • Handle: RePEc:cgd:ppaper:272

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