IT major Wipro Ltd has listed US President Donald Trump’s policies as a risk factor that could impact its business, citing promotion of “greater restrictions on free trade” among key worrying points. The Bengaluru-based firm which earned 52 per cent of its IT services revenue from the Americas, including the US, said significant developments stemming from the US presidential election could have a material adverse effect on its business.
As a candidate, Trump and his administration had expressed support for policies impacting existing trade agreements, like North America Free trade agreement (NAFTA), and proposed trade agreements, Wipro said in an SEC filing.
In its annual report for the fiscal ended March 31, 2017 filed with the market regulator, Wipro further said Trump administration has been “promoting greater restrictions on free trade generally and significant increases on tariffs on goods imported into the United States”.
It added: “Changes in US social, political, regulatory and economic conditions or in laws and policies governing foreign trade, manufacturing, development and investment in the territories and countries where we currently operate could adversely affect our business.”
The company had reported net sales of Rs 55,420.9 crore in the fiscal ended March 31, 2017.
After assuming office last year, Trump has taken several steps, including H1B visa restrictions, that raised concerns in the Indian IT sector.
This April he signed an executive order that called for a review of the H-1B visa programme, saying they should never be used to replace American workers and must be given only to the most skilled and highest paid applicants.
The US had also accused top Indian IT firms TCS and Infosys of ‘unfairly’ cornering the lion’s share of the H-1B work visas by putting extra tickets in the lottery system.
Wipro had said in April that it expected locals to constitute more than half of its workforce in the US by June as it continues to make “significant” investments in the American market amid tightening of visa norms.
The company further said in the SEC filing that if the economy in the Americas or Europe continued to be volatile or uncertain or conditions in the global financial market deteriorate, pricing for its services may become less attractive.
Clients located in these geographies may reduce or postpone their technology spending significantly, it added.
The other factors, which the company said are “not within our control that could cause significant variations in our results in any particular quarter”, include “political uncertainties or changes in regulations in India, the United States and other countries that we operate in”.
Besides, it also said the duration of tax holidays or exemptions and availability of other Indian government incentives would be a factor.