Cagayan de Oro City ranked 7th in the 10 “next wave cities” nationwide identified by the Business Processing Association of the Philippines (BPAP), Commission on Information and Communications Technology (CICT) and Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) in terms of their potential as information technology-business process outsourcing (IT-BPO) hubs.

Davao topped the list, followed by Sta. Rosa in Laguna, Bacolod in Negros Occidental, Iloilo, Metro Cavite, Lipa in Batangas, Cagayan de Oro, Malolos in Bulacan, Baguio and Dumaguete in Negros Oriental.

Meanwhile, Angeles-Clark improved its status from a next wave city to an established IT-BPO similar to Metro Manila and Metro Cebu.

The identification and development of next wave cities is aimed at spreading the growth and benefits of the IT-BPO industry in terms of more employment, higher incomes and increased economic activity, as well as ease salary and rental pressures to support its continued expansion.

BPAP information and research director Gigi Virata said in determining the list, they follow a scorecard ranking that weighs the availability of talent, infrastructure, cost and business environment. The largest criterion is talent with 40 percent in the overall ranking, as the amount and quality of available and appropriately skilled workforce remains the biggest consideration.

Another major factor is infrastructure, which has a 30 percent weight in the rating system. BPAP explained that IT-BPOs look at road accessibility, available international and domestic flights, reliable power supply and suitable office spaces, among others.

Another major requirement is the presence of fiber optic network providers in these new growth areas. BPAP pointed out that these companies need reliable international connectivity and a strong domestic backbone network, as well as relevant managed solutions that would fit their specific requirements in the sites they set up in. These, together with quality talent pool are key requirements in raising the level of next wave cities as prime locations for IT-BPOs.

with article by Mary Ann Ll. Reyes (The Philippine Star)

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