Jan 18, 2017 - Politics & Policy

Cisco CEO hopeful about Trump's immigration stance

Donald Trump's pow-wow with tech leaders last month was "a very constructive meeting," Cisco CEO Chuck Robbins told Business Insider in Davos.

Why he cares: Cisco filed approximately 2,250 H-1B visa applications since 2012, according to Labor Department data. H1-B visas allow companies to hire high-skilled immigrants to fill specialized jobs if they can't find the talent they need in the U.S. Trump has criticized companies for using the visas to hire entry-level workers at lower salaries to cut costs.

Robbins said tech executives spoke to Trump about separating visa issues for graduate-level workers from other border issues.

There's immigration control and the border issues and then there's high-skilled immigration. They're two different issues, and he agreed with that. I think when I talk to leaders of other countries around the world, everyone is trying to think through what their high-skilled-immigration strategy is. Because everyone is struggling to have the best and brightest working inside their borders. —Chuck Robbins, Cisco CEO

Robbins said he's optimistic about global business after the meeting with Trump. "I think the changes that are being contemplated will not only be good for the U.S. but will also be good for the global economy," he said.

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