Last updated: November 2, 2017 at 19:26 pm
Concern is spreading that Grenada may lose access to the important E-2 visa scheme in the wake of Tuesday’s terror attacks in New York City.
Grenada is the only English-speaking eastern Caribbean island whereby citizens can apply for the E-2 Investor Visa.
This travel document allows people to live and work inside the United States for up to two years, and is based on investors controlling their affairs inside the country.
There is no limit on the number of times it can be renewed.
But following Tuesday’s attack, which saw Sayfullo Saipov mow down over 20 people, President Trump has turned his attention to visa entry into the USA.
Saipov is a Uzbek national, and entered the country legally in 2010.
Trump took to Twitter to state that “chain migration” must end.
One well-placed source told WIC News that Grenada’s pathway to the states makes it high-risk if Trump makes swingeing cutbacks.
As the only Caribbean country that both offers economic citizenship and is eligible for E-2 visa applications, it has been described as a “backdoor” to the States.
“There is no doubt that China and the Middle East are being looked at by the citizenship by investment industry in Grenada as fertile ground to say ‘look, you get access to Grenada but more importantly a way into the United States of American,” they said.
A number of online directories feature instructions on how to get round American visa restrictions.
One states that because Chinese-born investors have been applying in droves to the EB-5 programmes, the waiting time is now a matter of years – up to a decade, according to some reports.
Earlier this year Forbes, the American business magazine, published an article detailing how, by applying for citizenship in Grenada, the wait for entry to the US becomes less than six months.
Another site features a post titled “Grenada passport: a simple way to US residence”.
CHAIN MIGRATION must end now! Some people come in, and they bring their whole family with them, who can be truly evil. NOT ACCEPTABLE! pic.twitter.com/PQGeTTdRtX
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 1, 2017
A Barbados-based businessman, who asked not to be named, said that they had seen a number of people using methods such as going through Grenada as a way in the America.
“Yes, in some cases it is legitimate, but the rules are in place for a reason,” he told WIC News.
“I know of people who really should not have been admitted but it looks like they found a loophole.”
Trump, whose hardline on immigration has continued from his campaign into his presidency, is currently focused on the Diversity Visa Lottery – which allowed in New York suspect Saipov.
But in a tweet yesterday, he said: “CHAIN MIGRATION must end now! Some people come in, and they bring their whole family with them, who can be truly evil. NOT ACCEPTABLE!”
WIC News has reached out to the government of Grenada for comment, as well as the US embassy in Barbados.
The US Department of State declined to comment.