US shutdown won’t affect BPO firms

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The United States government shutdown will not have a significant effect on the country’s information technology and business process management (IT-BPM) industry, according Information Technology and Business Process Outsourcing Association (Ibpap) President Jose Mari Mercado.

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“I think it’s really too early for us to assess the potential impact that the US government shutdown will have on the IT-BPM industry,” he said.

Mercado added that it is unlikely that the shutdown will directly affect the IT-BPM industry since the US government is not outsourcing federal work to the Philippines, especially since offshoring federal work is prohibited under US federal laws.

“In my opinion, I think that the US government shutdown will be resolved soon, so I don’t think it could impact the country that much, because it is imperative that they resolve it right away,” Mercado said.

Jovy Hernandez, Philippine Long Distance Co. Alpha Enterprise president, also believes that the shutdown will have no effect on the industry, with US investors keeping their preference for the Filipino workforce when it comes to outsourcing.

“I was in the US when the shutdown happened. Initially of course it was concerning, I was sure there’s going to be some effects. But when I talked to the different investors over there, they said that their companies remain committed to their expansion in the Philippines,” he said

Hernandez added that, “What is more encouraging is that when you talk to potential investors and they consider the Philippines as one of their choices. And it’s not only the companies who feel that way, but also their customers. They are stating that: ‘ok, we’ll give you business but we want it outsourced in the Philippines,” he said.

Grace Castillo, head of Globe Business Enterprise Sales, and Monchito Ibrahim, deputy executive director of the Department of Science and Technology-Information and Communications Technology Office, also believe that the industry is safe from the implications of the shutdown.

“It won’t have an effect as far as achieving the industry’s target revenue of $25 billion in 2016 is concerned,” said Ibrahim.

“We have other markets to focus on,” said Castillo.

Jan Erick C. Tutaan

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