Philippine Government Concludes V-Shaped Recovery For Businesses Affected By COVID-19
The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), IT and Business Process Association Philippines (IBPAP) and Healthcare Information Management Association of the Philippines (HIMAP), reports a V-shaped economic recovery for the Philippines in 2021 with heightened opportunities for new and existing BPOs.
Progress on the Country’s Priority Projects
Since the first quarter of 2020 leading up to the declaration of Enhanced Community Quarantine in major cities in the Philippines, health system capacity has been a top priority followed by the implementation of intensified infrastructure and telecom projects, freeing up of highly skilled human resources and meeting the increased demand for IT services. Among these specific steps include securing of quality and medical-grade Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and more hospital beds, increasing cremation capacity, conducting of mass testing for COVID-19, registering up to 112% investments in infrastructure, transport and manufacturing, nationwide installation of 60,000 km of fiber optic network and creation of support facilities for 3rd Telecom and satellite-based connectivity solution with highly manufactured content. On top of these, 9 new I.T. centers and parks were proclaimed nationwide to accompany new and expanding BPO-ITM players.
Business Continuity Plans In Place
While non-essential businesses are temporarily closed under strict levels of quarantine namely Enhanced Community Quarantine (ECQ), Modified Enhanced Community Quarantine (MECQ) and General Community Quarantine (GCQ), essential businesses such as mining, banks and capital markets, export and BPO companies, manufacturing, e-commerce, repair and maintenance, delivery services and housing and office services remain open under these strict levels to keep the economy running. Specifically, BPOs have continued operations even with the onset of the pandemic while maintaining the safety of its employees through on-site accommodation and work-from-home arrangements. Public transport is also limited to private cars and shuttles for employees and frontliners.
Accelerated Recovery and Investments Stimulus For the Economy
House Bill No. 6815 or the Accelerated Recovery and Investments Stimulus For the Economy (ARISE) has been approved by the House of Representatives in its third reading which covers 1.3 trillion budget to cover for economic loss from the pandemic and to speed up the country’s growth. This post-pandemic stimulus package will allocate 20 billion for mass testing of COVID 19 in 2020-2021, 110 billion assistance for critically-impacted businesses, freelancers, self-employed and repatriated OFWs, 30 billion for the TUPAD program by the Department of Labor and Employment and 42 billion for education subsidies. Structural, financial and sectoral interventions are also in place for the benefit of MSMEs and affected industries such as tourism, and transportation.
Positive Standpoint For BPOs Investing In PH
Inflation rates in the Philippines are also low and stable with a competitive salary for customer service representatives at par with India and other ASEAN countries. The Philippine BPO-ITM industry has also recorded a 5.8 percent growth in headcount and 7.1% in revenues in 2019 amidst political and economic challenges such as change of government policies and the rise of disruptive technologies such as artificial intelligence and information architecture.
For more updates on the Philippines’ business climate, visit www.dti.gov.ph.