America Faces Competition in Attracting Entrepreneurs
Much like how our own proposal provides incentives to keep startups local, the Chilean government has started a program to make Chile the “Silicon Valley of Latin America.” In attempts to attract the best entrepreneurs from around the world, Chile has offered them a $40,000 grant and a one year work visa, as well as office space and fast-track paperwork that enables them to open bank accounts, in return for living in the country for six months. Because it is fully sponsored by the government, entrepreneurs in the program have access to being in the right circles, giving them access to some of the best mentoring, venture capitalists, market information, and networking available in Chile.
Steve Wozniak, who founded Apple with Steve Jobs, believes the program is effective, saying,”I would love to go there if I were young. This is the greatest program I have ever seen of this type in the entire world. I will recommend it even to my own kids.”
In face of global competition like this, America would do well to, at the very least, allow innovative talent into the country. In an age where countries from around the world are able to offer increasingly attractive programs, the United States will continue to lose more and more talent until it reforms its current policies.
More about Start-Up Chile can be found here.