10 ?Next Wave Cities? picked as BPO hotspots; emerging cities also named

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A new list of ?Next Wave Cities (NWC)? that are deemed most suitable to host the IT-BPM (information technology and business process management) sector has been released by the government, which drew up the list in cooperation with the private sector.

The ?Next Wave Cities? list was drawn up the DOST-ICT Office, IBPAP, and Leechiu Property Consultants. Photo shows (from left) IBPAP chief executive Jomari Mercado, ICT Office deputy executive director Monchito Ibrahim, and Leechiu Property Consultants CEO David Leechiu
The ?Next Wave Cities? list was drawn up the DOST-ICT Office, IBPAP, and Leechiu Property Consultants. Photo shows (from left) IBPAP chief executive Jomari Mercado, ICT Office deputy executive director Monchito Ibrahim, and Leechiu Property Consultants CEO David Leechiu

These cities, in alphabetical order, are: Baguio City, Cagayan De Oro City, Dagupan City, Dasmarinas City, Dumaguete City, Lipa City, Malolos City, Naga City, Sta. Rosa City, Laguna, and Taytay, Rizal.

The top locations were identified based on the 2015 assessment guided by the NWC scorecard conducted by the Department of Science and Technology-Information and Communications Technology Office (DOST-ICT Office), Information Technology and Business Process Association of the Philippines (IBPAP), and Leechiu Property Consultants (LPC).

The NWC scorecard includes the following criteria: talent, infrastructure, cost, and business environment. All these are factored in to evaluate a city?s ability to enable and support the entry and growth of IT-BPM companies in its area.

Apart from the 10 NWCs announced, government and industry leaders also elevate Davao City and Iloilo City to the status of Centers of Excellence for IT-BPM operations. They join the ranks of Metro Manila, Metro Cebu, Metro Clark, and Bacolod City as premier IT-BPM hosts and high-density locations.

For this year, 10 ?New Emerging Cities? were also recognized for their potential to become Next Wave Cities. These are, in alphabetical order: Balanga City, Batangas City, Iriga City, Laoag City, Legazpi City, Puerto Princesa City, Roxas City, Tarlac City, Tuguegarao City, and Zamboanga City.

Special awards were also given to four cities that stood out in respective categories. Dasmarinas City is lauded as Best in Talent Availability, Laoag City is Best in Infrastructure, Dumaguete City is Best in Business Environment, and Legazpi City is awarded with Most Active ICT Council and LGU.

DOST-ICT Office deputy executive director Monchito Ibrahim remarked that the outsourcing industry is on track to exceed OFW remittances and achieve its goal of employing about 1.3 million workers.

“We would like to recognize the top ranked Next Wave Cities based on the 2015 assessment. We have seen tremendous improvement in the readiness of NWCs to host IT-BPM operations. This has allowed us to spread the economic benefits of this industry to key cities and provinces where capable talents are also abundant,” he said.

Since its inception in 2009, the NWC program has spurred development not only for the IT-BPM sector but also for cities outside established IT-BPM hubs such as Metro Manila, Metro Cebu, Metro Clark, and Bacolod City.

During the press event, LPC chief executive officer David Leechiu bristled at the proposal to rationalize the fiscal incentives being given to the outsourcing sector.

?There are now about 53 to 55 townships being built all over the country. This is unprecedented in the history of the local real estate industry — a development triggered by the boom in OFW money, tourism, and the BPO industry,? he said.

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