(Manila, Philippines, May 20, 2013) — Highlighting the country’s momentum for the sustainable growth of the information technology and business process management (IT-BPM) industry, government and industry leaders today announced the Top 10 Next Wave Cities™ (NWC) for 2012.
According to the Department of Science and Technology-Information and Communications Technology Office (DOST-ICTO) and Information Technology and Business Process Association of the Philippines (IBPAP), the top 10 locations for the next wave of growth are, in alphabetical order: Baguio City, Davao City, Dumaguete City, Iloilo City, Lipa City, Metro Bulacan (Baliuag, Calumpit, Malolos City, Marilao, and Meycauayan City), Metro Cavite (Bacoor City, Dasmariñas City, and Imus City), Metro Laguna (Calamba City, Los Baños, and Sta. Rosa City), Metro Naga (Naga City and Pili), and Metro Rizal (Antipolo City, Cainta, and Taytay).
“With the IT-BPM industry’s significant contribution to the Philippine economy, the government is keen on supporting the expansion of voice and non-voice services to locations with the potential to support and sustain their growth. These Next Wave Cities™ were judged the best current or potential IT-BPM hosts based on talent, infrastructure, cost, and business environment and risk management (BERM),” said DOST Secretary Mario Montejo.
IBPAP president and CEO Jomari Mercado said the DOST-ICTO and IBPAP hope to help both local and international investors make location decisions by assessing these cities. “We view this as an essential contribution to making national economic growth and job generation inclusive by spreading it from established to emerging IT-BPM hubs,” Mercado said
This year, Bacolod City has been elevated to the status of Center of Excellence for IT-BPM operations. It joins the ranks of Metro Manila, Metro Cebu, and Metro Clark as a premier IT-BPM host and a high-density location. Bacolod City has been on the NWC list for three years. In the 2010‒2011 Next Wave Cities™ report, IT-BPM jobs in the city have increased by 68 percent in the past three years, creating over 12,000 employment opportunities in 2010 from only 2,154 in 2007. Local stakeholders have also been aggressively marketing Bacolod City to large global companies and sustaining hosted operations.
For the first time, DOST-ICTO and IBPAP also honored the best locations in talent, infrastructure, and business environment and risk management (BERM). These special awards are based on the original criteria of the NWC scorecard for each category.
Metro Cavite received the top score (99 percent) for talent availability with 17,000 graduates within the area covered, a workforce of over 1.2 million (of which 47 percent are professionals), two programs with CHED-certified Center of Excellence (COE) for Teacher Training and Center of Development (COD) for IT Education, and 95 percent of its absorptive workforce capacity still available for locators.
For infrastructure, Metro Laoag scored a perfect 100 percent after DOST-ICTO and IBPAP considered its quality of roads, availability of hotels, presence of international and domestic airports, frequency of domestic and international flights, and availability of office space in PEZA-certified buildings.
Iloilo City was named the top location for BERM (96 percent) because of its low vulnerability to natural disturbances and business friendliness. A perfect score for BERM means that a location has at least four approved sites by the Philippine Economic Zone Authority (PEZA), is not covered by a travel advisory, has an ICT Council, has very low vulnerability to natural disturbances, and a crime rate of less than two percent.
DOST-ICTO and IBPAP also acknowledged the Legazpi City and ICT Council as the “Most Effective ICT Council and LGU.” Emerging IT-BPM locations, including Batangas City, Cagayan de Oro City, Dagupan City, and Tagbilaran City, were also cited.
Among the emerging locations, Batangas City stood out for its large talent pool. It was, in fact, in the top 10 for talent availability among the NWCs. Cagayan de Oro City came out as top four for its excellent infrastructure while Tagbilaran City was among the 10 best in terms of business environment. Dumaguete City was recognized for both talent and cost.
“All these locations only show that the Philippines has proven its capability to attract and host major IT-BPM clients. If their local ICT councils and the local government units continue to work together, we are confident that the industry’s next wave of growth will happen in these cities,” said Mercado.
About the Information Technology and Business Process Association of the Philippines (IBPAP)
The Information Technology and Business Process Association of the Philippines (IBPAP) is the enabling association for the information technology and business process management (IT-BPM) industry in the Philippines. IBPAP serves as the one-stop information and advocacy gateway for the industry. With approximately 300 industry and support-industry members, including five associations—the Animation Council of the Philippines, Inc., Contact Center Association of the Philippines, Game Developers Association of the Philippines, Healthcare Information Management Outsourcing Association of the Philippines, and Philippine Software Industry Association—IBPAP plays a pivotal role in sustaining rapid growth of the IT-BPM and GIC industry by working to ensure an enduring supply of high-quality labor, supporting service innovation, and providing country visibility.
IBPAP assists investors in setting up operations easily and quickly in the Philippines. Relevant research, introductions to key government and industry officials, and a series of briefings at each step of the investment process ensure a seamless development process. On-going support is provided through a wide variety of initiatives, including programs for HR development, business development, and on-going knowledge sharing and networking opportunities.
About DOST-ICTO – The Information and Communications Technology Office (ICTO) is a government agency under the policy, technical and administrative supervision of the Department of Science and Technology (DOST). It is tasked to lead and harmonize initiatives on ICT using a multi-stakeholder approach. Its primary thrusts include ICT industry development, eGovernment, ICT policy development, Internet for all and Cybersecurity.
In the area of ICT industry development, the ICTO is tasked to formulate, recommend and implement an appropriate policy and program framework that will promote the rapid development and improved global competitiveness of the country’s ICT industry, including the IT-BPM industry. Towards this end, the ICTO implements and coordinates strategic and targeted programs in the areas of industry capability development, marketing and research, and workforce development for said industry. The programs will also support the national government’s objectives of sustained economic development through the generation of investments and creation of jobs from the ICT industry.