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PIA Press Release

Western Visayas has more to offer for expanding BPO industry, says NEDA

Iloilo City (15 February) -- Western Visayas has growing potentials for the Business Process Outsourcing (BPO)'s expanding trends, which places more premiums on skills quality and competence.

NEDA 6 director Ro-an Bacal said Bacolod and Iloilo Cities have become targets for investors in telecommunications because of their locations and the quality of graduates, skilled in communications and the English language.

She said the expanding technical and short term BPO courses which the government has invested in during the Arroyo administration, presented a distinct advantage and a relatively fast-growing highly-skilled sectors.

The NEDA director said the government has invested heavily on scholarships fro call center training.

Records of the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) 6 showed 10 schools in Iloilo City offering BPO-related courses, with 3,277 Pangulong Gloria Scholars as of 2009.

Three of these, the RRLS Information Communication Technology, Joy Ilagan Career center Foundation, and the Panpacific Career and Management Institute offer Finishing Courses for Call Center Agencts.

Just recently, President Arroyo included call centers and ICT schools in Bacolod and Iloilo as part of her Cyber Corridor Tour to highlight government investments in these areas.

NEDA record showed that while the industry has accounted for about one percent of the country's work force, it has also given educated and skilled workers an alternative for work abroad, allowing the country to escape recession.

A PIA dispatch said the BPO sector is expected to grow by at least 26 percent this year, increasing employment to 600,000.

With the increasing demand for BPO sector expansion, NEDA 6 said Bacolod and Iloilo cities need more facilities and buildings to house call centers and other companies, on top of the need to step up power supply. (PIA6/ESS) [top]

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