MANILA -- All local government units (LGUs) in the country will have a common platform which will enable them to promote their locations as the next information technology-business process outsourcing (ITBPO) hub. This, after the Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT), Business Process Association of the Philippines (IBPAP), and National ICT Confederation of the Philippines (NICP) launched the digitalcitiesPH Portal.
In a press conference Friday, DICT Undersecretary Monchito Ibrahim said the initiative aims to ensure that economic benefits to the Philippines as one of the top global providers of ITBPO services will trickle down to areas outside Metro Manila and Cebu.
Ibrahim said the digitalcitiesPH Portal will initially host 35 LGUs to promote their areas as a viable location for ITBPO investments. These areas include Davao, Iloilo, Bacolod, and Clark, among others. “There are other cities that are fast catching up and we’re trying to capacitate them some more to actually also be able to help the other cities outside of the first 35 to become really ready [for ITBPO investments],” he said.
“The focus of the initiative, digitalcitiesPH initiative, it is all about ensuring that the economic benefits that we are actually now seeing from the Philippines being a global leader in the ITBPM sector is actually also distributed to places outside the metropolis, specifically Metro Manila and Metro Cebu,” Ibrahim stressed.
IBPAP President and Chief Executive Officer Rey Untal said the digitalcitiesPH Portal can be a tool for LGUs to bring in more ITBPO jobs in other parts of the country. Untal mentioned that in order for the LGUs to promote their locations on the portal, they have to identify the capacity of their local talents, infrastructure, cost and ease of doing business, and digital readiness.
“So it’s going to be a portal that captures all of these information and it makes it very transparent and it demystifies the readiness of the different municipalities and the cities, and not just the prime cities and the tier one locations. Through the digitalcitiesPH Portal, investors and locators can get strategic insights, and this is very important because it gives them very good overview of a location’s investment landscape,” Untal explained.
Currently, about 70 percent of ITBPO jobs are in Metro Manila and the rest are distributed in other parts of the country. But it was also noted that 70 percent of the country’s graduates are in the provinces. (PNA)