MALVAR, Batangas – The country’s business process outsourcing (BPO) sector is looking to strengthen its presence in the Calabarzon region, lured by the abundance of talent and generous government incentives.
In an interview on Tuesday, Celeste Ilagan, IT and Business Process Association of the Philippines (IBPAP) chief Policy and Regulatory Affairs officer, said Calabarzon provinces have practically rolled out the “red carpet” to the BPO industry.
She said BPO firms seeking to relocate to sites within the five-province region stand to get tax holidays of up to two years.
“The further they (BPO firms) move outside of Metro Manila, the more government incentives they are entitled to. Also, the PEZA (Philippine Economic Zone Authority) is really encouraging the establishment of infrastructure to support the technology sector. In this province (Batangas), Aboitiz InfraCapital is constructing the first building here dedicated solely to BPOs… inside an industrial estate,” Ilagan said.
IBPAP bared its five-year roadmap for the country’s BPO sector during a presentation held at the LIMA Park Hotel here on Oct. 13.
The event, the second installment of IBPAP’s Infrastructure Series roadshows, was titled “Advantages and Incentives of Locating in Philippine Economic Zones.”
Ilagan said Batangas Governor Hermilando Mandanas, who attended the event, was exceptionally bullish about growing the BPO sector in the province.
Batangas has been tagged as the next “digital city,” attracting more BPO firms and causing companies like the Aboitiz group to invest heavily in infrastructure.
On April 19, President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. approved Proclamation No. 204, designating several parcels of land located at Barangays Santiago, Luta Sur and Bagong Pook in Malvar for the expansion of Lima Technology Center – Special Economic Zone.
The expansion is expected to bring PHP864.224 million in investments, according to PEZA.
“It is exactly what we need to continue what the administration is gearing towards: inclusive economic development where thousands of jobs are created in the respective jurisdictions. More investments mean more exports and more jobs,” PEZA Director General Tereso Panga said in an earlier statement.
As far as the broader BPO sector is concerned, Ilagan said local BPO companies target to hire an additional 1.1 million employees by 2028, almost doubling its current workforce of some 1.57 million individuals.
She further revealed that the BPO sector is forecast to contribute to the national economy annual revenues amounting to about US$59 billion by 2028.
This year, the BPO industry is expected to bring in some US$35.4 billion, according to IBPAP’s projections.
IBPAP is the flagship association for the Information Technology and Business Process Management sector in the Philippines, primarily representing the industry, its members, its employers, investors who have located in the country and its local employees. (PNA)