Flat growth seen for PH outsourcing industry this year

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The growth of the local information technology and business process management (IT-BPM) industry is expected to be flat this year amid the pandemic.

IBPAP president and CEO Rey Untal (Photo credit: tesda.gov.ph))

The IT and Business Process Association of the Philippines (IBPAP) bared its recalibrated forecast for the industry during the closing ceremony of the 12th International Innovation Summit on Thursday evening, Nov. 19.

The revenue outlook for the IT-BPM industry at end-2020 is at $26 billion, while full-time employment will remain at 1.3 million.

In 2019, the sector closed the year with revenues of $26.3 billion, 7.1 percent higher than in 2018. Last year, employment also grew by 5.8 percent to 1.3 million from the 2018 level.

In an online press briefing on Friday, IBPAP president Rey Untal said the industry is still outperforming the global economy, which is expected to contract by 3 percent to 4 percent this year.

However, recovery is expected next year, and by 2022, the local IT-BPM sector is projected to grow between 3.2 percent and 5.5 percent in revenues and between 2.7 percent to 5 percent in employment.

“At this point, we are operating at pre-Covid levels, and developments are happening. New growth is starting,” Untal said.

To support the industry outlook, he added, stakeholders should focus on digital upskilling “at speed” and “at scale” of their workforce.

Untal said the growth of the local industry would also be enabled by accelerated digital transformation, a robust ecosystem, a skilled workforce, and government support.

The future growth of the industry will also depend on the availability of the Covid-19 vaccines, as well as the outcome of the Corporate Recovery and Tax Incentives for Enterprises (CREATE) bill, he said.

Untal added that recent reports on the Covid-19 vaccines being developed by Pfizer and Moderna are sending positive news to the global market and have been well received by the global IT-BPM industry.

On the CREATE bill, he said they are looking forward to an “investor-friendly” law.

“If you look at CREATE specifically, it should be investment-friendly. And this means the ability to entice not just new investments, but keep the existing investors,” he said. — Kris Crismundo (PNA)

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