St Louis economic council to apply for EB-5 regional center status
Economic analysts in St Louis are levering the increasing popularity of the EB-5 visa program to publicize foreign investment opportunities and raise capital for the region’s industries.
The St Louis County Economic Council is currently finalizing an application to the U.S. State Department to become recognized as an EB-5 regional center, St Louis Today reports.
Becoming a regional center would make St Louis, St Louis County and St Charles County eligible to issue green cards to foreign nationals who invest at least $500,000 in U.S. businesses in areas with high unemployment rates.
“This is really a way for us to attract investment and jobs here, with people from around the globe investing in our own backyard,” Economic Council president Denny Coleman told the news source.
He added, “It’s a way to help equalize, if you will, the balance of international trade and investment.”
According to the Migration Policy Institute in Washington, D.C., hostile credit markets and high unemployment rates have led local economic development groups throughout the U.S. to seek new avenues of job creation.
In St Louis, officials are specifically looking to guide investment to start-up plant and life science incubators and companies that have a use for the vacated Chrysler plant in Fenton, Missouri.