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Comprehensive guide to Chambers of Commerce, BPO organizations and Government bodies in the Philippines

Investors need all the help they can get to make the process of setting up a BPO company in the Philippines as smooth as possible. Connecting with the right government bodies is a must to register the business and to ensure proper documentation and compliance to local and national laws. This includes going through the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) or Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR), and checking in with the Board of Investments (BOI) and the Philippine Economic Zone Authority (PEZA) to see if the business qualifies for various incentives and exemptions.

In addition, investors must find a location for their new business, assemble their team and process work visas for foreign nationals, and provide their new employees with training to ensure that they are able to deliver world-class service to their clients from all over the globe. To accomplish all these while expending the least amount of time and effort, investors must find and partner with well-connected individuals and groups who can help them navigate the system and introduce them to the right people.

Fortunately, the local BPO community is a welcoming one, and the largest BPO organizations and chambers of commerce offer various services that can assist investors in setting up operations in the country. These include holding a series of briefings about each step of the investment process, conducting research relevant to the investor’s business interests, and providing introductions to key government officials and industry organizations. These services can help entrepreneurs and investors set concrete targets for their new company’s milestones and further refine their business plan.

Continued support for continued growth

In addition to providing practical assistance in setting up a new investment, BPO organizations, government bodies, and the different chambers of commerce in the Philippines can also directly and indirectly lend a hand to companies that are on the verge of expanding their services and market. These agencies can provide ongoing support by fostering partnerships between industry players and academic, government, and economic bodies; hosting events centered on networking and developing human capital; initiating research and knowledge-sharing activities, and spearheading programs that promote the growth of the IT-BPM industry in the Philippines and ensuring that the country remains as a preferred destination for IT-BPM services.

That said, government bodies, chambers of commerce, and BPO organizations in the Philippines remain invaluable allies and partners to investors and entrepreneurs who are looking to start and grow a BPO company in the country. Here’s an exhaustive list of these agencies and what they can do for you and your newest business venture.

BPO Organizations

ACPI

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Animation Council of the Philippines Inc. (ACPI)

What do Scooby Doo, Tom & Jerry, The Addams Family, Dragon Ball Z, Finding Nemo, and The Incredibles all have in common? Apart from being among the world’s best-loved cartoons and animated movies, they have also known the touch of a Filipino animator’s hand. What’s more, there are also a lot of Filipino animators who have contributed their skills in the gaming industry, including arguably the most popular gaming companies, Nintendo and Sony.

Knowing that this pool of high-quality talent exists in the country, the people behind the Animation Council of the Philippines Inc. (ACPI) decided to band together in 2000 to support and promote Filipino expertise and services in various forms of animation production, both here and abroad.

About ACPI

ACPI is an association composed of animation companies, animation schools, and animation technology providers in the country. Recognized and supported by the Philippine government, ACPI is a non-stock, non-profit organization whose primary goal is to promote the Philippines’ animation industry, so that the country will be considered among the preferred countries that render services for the animation industry worldwide. ACPI also aims to promote both local and international Filipino talent, and hopes that its member studios will soon be regarded as creatively and technologically competitive outfits around the world.

Education and skills development are also a priority for ACPI. Together with the country’s educational bodies like the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA), Department of Education (DepEd), and the Commission on Higher Education (CHED), ACPI has developed comprehensive curriculums, training regulations, and assessment tools for schools that offer or are considering to offer animation courses. ACPI also regularly conducts workshops and competitions to further hone the skills of current and aspiring Filipino animators. Moreover, ACPI has also partnered with multinational companies like AMD, Empire Multimedia, and Ynzal to give Filipino animators access to high-quality tools of the trade.

Driven by its mission to nurture passion for animation, ACPI envisions itself to be a central force to the growth and development of the animation community in the Philippines. Currently, ACPI has over 15 animation studios under its banner and is proud to serve as a bridge between these Filipino animators and the high demand for their talents across the globe.

Animahenasyon a venue for learning, with various forums and workshops

Animahenasyon

Animahenasyon, the first and leading animation conference and festival in the country, was launched in 2006 as a platform to celebrate the skills and talents of Filipinos not just in animation but in storytelling through animation, as well. The festival also aims to encourage both professional and budding animators to explore the various opportunities within and outside the country, as well as to provide a convenient location for the exchange of ideas and business opportunities for groups and individuals.

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In line with their goal of education and skills development, ACPI also made Animahenasyon a venue for learning, with various forums and workshops, talks from local and international names in animation, and competitions. Apart from furthering knowledge, Animahenasyon also aims to equip animators with the latest information about animation technology and trends, copyright issues, and other relevant topics that surround the industry and its allied fields.

In November 2017, ACPI held the 11th edition of Animahenasyon, which gathered more than 2,500 participants from the academe, local animation companies, global professionals, and independent artists and animators. With the fast-paced evolution of technology in mind, as well as the rise of a younger workforce, the conference explored a range of topics that included the latest innovations like virtual reality and developing company cultures suited for the creative millennial.

The Future of Philippine Animation Industry

Each year, ACPI tries to bring as many new experiences as possible to Animahenasyon. In its 11th outing, Animahenasyon not only conducted its annual animation competition (which received close to 100 entries), it also showcased a host of animated movies that, according to the organizers, they hoped would inspire and create an impact to local artists when it comes to global trends and standards in animation.

Among the films screened were the critically acclaimed Japanese film Kimi no Na wa (Your Name), and French animated movies Aya of Yop City, My Mommy is in America and She Met Buffalo Bill, and The Girl Without Hands.

ACPI has also expanded its partnerships to include the Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT), the Cultural Center of the Philippines (CCP), and the Department of Trade and Industry. The goal is to make animation professionals not just competent talent-wise, but also well-versed in the basics of entrepreneurship, which is a valuable bit of knowledge for freelancers and independent artists who have to deal with both the artistic and business aspects of their craft. Hopefully, in the near future, there would be no artist — animator or otherwise — that would have to undersell their considerable skills.

ACPI, through Animahenasyon, has also promised its support toward the achievement of the goals set in the IT-BPM roadmap. Even as outsourcing continues to be a huge driver to the growth of the Philippine animation industry, there is also an increasing demand for original content. Understanding how these two facets of the local animation scene work together to move the industry forward is critical, especially in the next five years.

With these in mind, ACPI aims to answer the question “What is the Filipino brand of animation?” We have long been an outsourcing destination for animation, but we have yet to establish our identity in the global arena. With the help of Animahenasyon and ACPI’s other initiatives, the organization aims to make the Philippines not just a pool of skilled animation talent, but also a source of high-quality original animation content.

the organization aims to drive CRM (Customer Relationship Management) innovations and best practices.

Contact Center Association of the Philippines (CCAP)

The late nineties through the beginning of the new millennium saw the rise of the call center industry in the Philippines. The country now boasts of being one of the top 3 countries for foreign direct investment through contact center and back office operations.

The BPO industry contributed as much as 10% to the country’s current GDP. It’s a long way away from the early days of the industry when it accounted for only 0.075% for the year 2000.

Through all these years of growth, CCAP (Contact Center Association of the Philippines) has guided and supported the industry. The organization championed the Filipino talents who put the country in the map with their impeccable work ethic and genuine concern for customer relationship.

CCAP is the official industry organization for call centers in the country. Its mission is to harness, harmonize, and galvanize sectors in pursuit of sustaining the country’s top position in the global contact center industry. In addition, the organization aims to drive CRM (Customer Relationship Management) innovations and best practices.

A Brief History

The organization was established in October 2001 with only 7 founding member companies. CCAP is now composed of 90 members. These companies are located all over the Philippines, proving that expansion has reached the provinces as well. In total, CCAP membership represents 70% of the entire call center industry.

CCAP at Work

Expansion of Talent Supply – CCAP organizes regular skills training and offers certifications for career development. The organization emphasizes the importance of health and wellness along with values formation as key to employee retention.

While it’s still true that the BPO, especially call centers, is still one of the largest jobs-generating industries, only a few applicants are actually qualified. In a study conducted by Aspiring Minds, an Indian-based employability assessment firm, around 65% of college graduates in the country are not equipped with the proper skills to successfully work in their chosen profession.

To address this, CCAP works with CHED (Commission on Higher Education) and TESDA (Technical Education and Skills Development Authority) to assess the curriculum and suggest improvements that are needed in the call center industry such as proficiency in English.

As for employees already working in the call center industry, CCAP conducts regular training to further improve and add valuable skills needed in call center offices. It also offers valuable insight that helps employers retain employees and keep them satisfied and motivated.

Government Partnership – As the official representative of the industry, CCAP works with the government to ensure a favorable business environment for employers. In some cases, they offer mediation between their members and government agencies for more efficient communication.

CCAP gives input on legislation, regulations, fiscal, and infrastructure issues that would affect the industry. With government partnership, the group can offer insights to their member companies that would help foreign businesses understand the country’s regulations and laws they have to follow.

Drive Innovation – One of the organization’s missions is to support and promote innovation through technology and development of best practices. Through trade shows and conferences, experts in the industry can share new knowledge and tools that will give the country the competitive advantage.

Change is inevitable. CCAP is always ready to steer the industry forward especially in terms of technology. One example is Verint’s Workforce Optimization Platform with voice analytics that was presented in their annual conference in 2013. The application assists customer service representatives to assess the customer’s issues and formulate solutions for different scenarios. These types of applications are now implemented in call center operations.

Promote Industry Welfare – CCAP considers employees of member companies as valuable members of the organization, too. As such, the organization also seeks to look out for their welfare.

CCAP joins with government and academe to develop best practices that would promote the call center agent’s well being. The organization regularly commissions studies and surveys that would give members concrete data so they can formulate precise solutions for employee issues.

Market the Country – CCAP always seeks new markets that could benefit from what the country has to offer in terms of call center services. It participates in marketing and branding campaigns for the country as a viable BPO destination.

CCAP Events and Activities

One of the most anticipated annual events in the CCAP calendar is its Contact Islands flagship conference. It’s the best time to connect and form new networks with people from different sectors all striving to bring the call center industry back into the forefront of innovation.

CCAP believes in developing young leaders to ensure the future of the call center industry. Their annual eTL course is especially designed to hone and develop the leadership skills of call center supervisors. Unlike typical lecture-type classes, this course offers hands-on or on-the-job training. A Team Leader certificate is handed out after completion.

Data privacy is a prevalent issue in the industry. CCAP’s Data Privacy Asia-Manila conference is an opportunity to hear from cyber security experts and discuss solutions applicable to the industry.

CEO Forums is a gathering of company heads from CCAP membership roster. This event is a chance for in depth discussions about challenges and opportunities faced by the industry.

What’s on the Horizon?

CCAP is optimistic about the country’s contact center industry. The group projects revenues to rise, from $12.8 billion in 2015 to $20.4 billion in 2022. The industry aims to provide 73,000 new jobs each year until 2022.

This is, at least, for the short-term future. In the long term, the industry is preparing to face what some calls an inevitable future – AI. What would the contact center industry look like after technologies such as Chatbots finally caught up with human speech?

CCAP is not waiting to find out. The organization is already moving towards working with educational institutions, the Department of Education, and Commission on Higher Education to update curriculums to reflect what the actual workplace would need in terms of skills and knowledge.

There’s no stopping innovation. Technology evolves so rapidly it can leave people behind. While other voices in the industry are skeptical about the effect that artificial intelligence brings to the call center industry, some are more pragmatic like CCAP.

 

This community is what the Game Developers Association of the Philippines or GDAP wants to promote and nurture.

Game Developers Association of the Philippines (GDAP)

It may not be common knowledge, but gaming is a booming industry in the Philippines. And when you talk about gaming, it’s not just about the players who participate in international, multi-million-prize eSports tournaments. Gaming is also about the development of these games, whether they are played on consoles, desktop computers, or mobile phones.

Indeed, Filipinos are not just adept at playing computer games — they’re also great at developing them. From 2003 PC game Anito developed by Anino Games (now Anino Playlab) to the mobile game Catch the Guava by 88GamePub (which gained over 100,000 on Google Play just one month after release), the Philippine game development community has not just expanded its numbers but also its horizons.

This community is what the Game Developers Association of the Philippines or GDAP wants to promote and nurture.

About GDAP

Established in 2007, GDAP is a trade association geared toward representing and promoting the country’s thriving game development industry. The Philippines may be a minor player in the international game development scene, with only a 0.02 percent share in a $90 billion global industry, but looking at it from a local perspective, it’s a lucrative sector that raked in some $70 million just some 5 years ago, with a total workforce of about 3,000 professionals. And considering that game development industry in the Philippines is relatively young, there is no way to go but up and forward.

GDAP aims to cultivate a vibrant, dynamic, and profitable Filipino game development industry that not only contributes to the growth and economic interests of the country, but also encourages the development of both individuals and organizations involved in game development.

Guided by its core values — responsible leadership, excellence and quality, and integrity and honesty — GDAP is committed to the development of the Philippine game development industry by supporting not just game developers but also the gamers who patronize their products.

Developing the Game Development Scene

There are various aspects involved in developing a game. These include game design, which is primarily the basic concept of the elements of a game and how it is going to be played; game writing, which involves the story, character dialogues, and character backstories, among others; level editing, which involves the creation of specific segments of a game (mini games and bonus stages, for example, may have a different designer and editor from the main game); audio engineering, which includes music, sound effects, and dubbing; animation; technical art and game art design; programming; quality testing; localization or translation (if necessary); and production.

All of these facets of game development are included in GDAP’s array of services, offered through its member companies, which help these entities expand their client base and, in turn, earn more. At the same time, GDAP also aims to hone the skills needed in these various dimensions of game development by hosting annual conferences and workshops and other learning opportunities, both locally and abroad.

Moreover, the multiple aspects involved in game development means that, while computer science and programming graduates are among the most likely to land a job in the game development industry, there are numerous opportunities in the game development industry for people who come from other backgrounds. These include creative writing, graphic design, and even marketing.

GDAP also understands the importance of government support for the continued growth of the local industry. This is why the association is also pushing for government initiatives that will give all parties involved equal opportunities and wider access to resources to continuously hone their craft. In fact, in 2014, GDAP representatives flew to California not just to attend various gaming industry events and catch up on the latest trends, but also to meet with the Philippine Consulate General and the Philippine Trade and Investment Center in Silicon Valley. Their discussions included prevailing (and successful) business models used by game studios in the Philippines, the current needs in terms of government support, as well as possible strategies to promote Filipino games and developers in future conventions.

The Future Looks Bright

Currently, there are only a handful of schools in the country that offer four-year courses dedicated to game design and development, among them De La Salle – College of Saint Benilde and iACADEMY. However, GDAP is hopeful that more schools will soon follow, especially with the recent surge in technological developments and interest in games and game development in general.

In recent years, GDAP’s focus has been to promote the Philippines not just as an outsourcing destination for game development needs but also as a hub of innovators. Beyond continuously pushing for the creation of original content, GDAP also wants to create a level playing field so that more startups would take the plunge and develop their own content.

This is why, apart from conducting discussions with relevant government agencies, GDAP is also teaming up with various companies and events to expand their reach. Among the group’s most recent collaborations is with the Electronic Sports and Gaming Summit (ESGS), one of the biggest gaming events in the Philippines and Southeast Asia. With different speakers and exhibitors from various companies, including Ubisoft, Unity 3D, Altitude Games, and Squeaky Wheel Studios, Playstation, Bandai, and Namco, and participation from tech and gaming brands like Wacom, Redfox, Synergy88, Kooapps, Top Draw Animation, and Stream Engine, GDAP, through ESGS, continues to work on promoting the craft and the industry among developers and gamers alike.

GDAP knows that there is no shortage of talent in the Philippines when it comes to game development; with a little support from relevant agencies, even the simplest game idea can become a big hit. This is what GDAP hopes for — more original concepts turned into full-fledged games, produced locally, and patronized globally.

The primary goal of this non-stock, non-profit trade association is to help set, develop, and shape best practices among the global shared service centers based in the Philippines.

Global In-House Center Council (GICC)

The rapid advancement in technology, particularly in the field of artificial intelligence, presents a lot of challenges and opportunities to the Philippine information technology and business process management (IT-BPM) industry. In the face of these changes, various government bodies and trade organizations for different IT-BPM sectors are rallying together to ensure that the Filipino talent is future-ready and that the country can maintain its position as a preferred outsourcing destination. Now more than ever, these groups are focused on providing trainings that lead to a successful career in the said industry, as well as developing locations outside major cities as attractive bases for IT-BPM investments.

The Global In-House Center Council (GICC), the trade association of shared service and in-house centers operating within the Philippines, is one of the main proponents of these projects. The group represents more than 50 members—many of which are Fortune 500 companies—that support more than 150,000 high-value jobs and bring in USD 4.7 billion to the country. The members of the group provide a wide range of services, from IT and legal support to healthcare and finance.

The primary goal of this non-stock, non-profit trade association is to help set, develop, and shape best practices among the global shared service centers based in the Philippines. As its members work together to maintain and grow the country’s edge in the business service sector, the GICC serves as a collective forum for addressing the various concerns of the industry. The association puts a lot of effort in showcasing the talent of the Filipino professional, thereby actively supporting the continued development of the country as a primary and preferred location for global in-house centers and multi-national corporations.

Programs, Projects, and Events

The GICC was duly incorporated under the laws of the Republic of the Philippines in April 2014. Shortly after, in 2016, the trade association partnered with the Information Technology and Business Process Association of the Philippines (IBPAP), the Philippine IT-BPM industry’s key information and advocacy gateway, and has since actively participated in its various programs and projects.

In addition to working with the IBPAP, the GICC also encourages its members to represent the group in events hosted by organizations that endeavor to develop the IT-BPM industry, particularly the in-house and shared services sector. These include the following:

International IT-BPM Summit. Formerly known as the International Outsourcing Summit, the International IT-BPM Summit or IIS is an annual gathering of industry stakeholders, leaders, and experts. It serves as a venue for conversations and discussions on industry trends, issues, and forecasts. In its 9th year in 2017, the IIS focused on the looming threats and opportunities presented by the upcoming artificial intelligence headwind. The GICC promoted the event to its members and offered support and significant discounts.

Annual Shared Services and BPO Week Philippines. Hosted by the Shared Services and Outsourcing Network (SSON), the Annual Shared Services and BPO Week Philippines is the largest gathering of shared service and BPO professionals in the country. The event is a venue for experts and organizations to share knowledge, experience, and tools that will further the industry. It is also a perfect opportunity to network with other industry stakeholders and players. In the past few years, the speakers and organizers discussed the different ways of providing training and connecting with colleagues online and face to face. The GICC is always well represented by its members in this big event.

Aside from attending events by other organizations, the GICC hosts regular events for its members. The general membership meeting, for one, is a venue for discussing the various acts and laws relevant to the industry, such as Republic Act No. 10173 or the Data Privacy Act of 2012. These meetings also serve as a venue for sharing ideas about topics that are of interest to the general membership, like 4-day workweek proposals and work-from-home arrangements. Organizing documentations regarding industry best practices and planning for events and projects are also done during these events.  

Becoming a Member of the GICC

The GICC accepts membership applications from companies that belong to any of these 3 categories: global or multinational company, shared services, and captive or wholly owned subsidiaries that perform services for the parent company. The country manager typically serves as the official representative of the company to the GICC. Aside from shared service and in-house centers, individuals who may serve as a consultant or advisor to the group because of their professional expertise or experience may be invited to become a member.

Focusing on Continued Growth

The group ended 2017 on a high note with 58 members in its roster, and the GICC only aims to make this number grow in 2018. In addition to strengthening its membership, the organization continues to pour efforts into meeting its goals under Accelerate PH, the Philippines IT-BPM Roadmap 2016-2022. Together with various government bodies, particularly the Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT), and other trade groups that support the IT-BPM industry, the GICC is working towards achieving the following by 2022:

  • Generating 1.8 million jobs
  • Directly and indirectly employing a total of 7.6 million personnel to the IT-BPM industry
  • Hiring 73% of these employees to mid- to high-level jobs
  • Hiring 500,000 personnel outside the National Capital Region
  • Bringing in USD 4.7 billion in revenue
  • Securing a 15% share of the global IT-BPM market

The IT-BPM industry is expected to plateau this 2018, but the GICC and its partner organizations are focused on achieving maximum growth and keeping on track with their mission to brand the Philippines as a preferred destination for international investments.

 

The Healthcare Information Management Association of the Philippines or HIMAP is a collective body that voices the concerns and addresses the needs of this growing and evolving IT-BPM industry sector.

Healthcare Information Management Association of the Philippines (HIMAP)

The culture of care is intrinsic in the Filipino people, so much so that the Philippine economy benefits greatly from it. This is evidenced by how Filipinos around the world excel in the field of healthcare, but it can also be seen in how the country maintains its position as a preferred destination for healthcare information management services (HIMS).

HIMS continues to be one of the top performing and employment-generating sectors of the country’s information technology and business process management (IT-BPM) industry. It employs over 120,000 fulltime employees who are involved in managing and processing healthcare data. These jobs deal with analytics and fraud management and claims settlement and management, and the resulting information is utilized in clinics, doctors’ offices, hospitals, insurance companies, and other organizations that provide healthcare-related services.

The Healthcare Information Management Association of the Philippines or HIMAP is a collective body that voices the concerns and addresses the needs of this growing and evolving IT-BPM industry sector.

About the HIMAP

The Healthcare Information Management Association of the Philippines represents the Philippine HIMS sector in the global market, and it brands and markets the Philippines as a preferred outsourcing destination for this particular IT-BPM sector.

To make this vision a reality, the HIMAP serves as an active proponent of plans, programs, and projects that aim to develop and nurture best practices in people, technology, and processes related to healthcare information management services. By adhering to the highest standard of healthcare documentation services in the global market and by helping create an environment where members are empowered to achieve the highest professional standards in the industry, the organization believes that it can contribute to the economic growth of the country.

Looking Back at HIMAP’s History

Throughout its history, the HIMAP has gone through a lot of changes, particularly in its name. The organization was first registered with the Philippine Securities and Exchange Commission in October 16, 2003 under the name Medical Transcription Industry Association of the Philippines, Inc. or MTIAPI.  During this period, the MTIAPI brought together distinguished and active players in the healthcare information management documentation outsourcing industry and united them under a common goal: to serve the needs of HIMS organizations, training centers, and vendors.

As a reflection of the tremendous growth of the industry it represents, MTIAPI changed its name to Healthcare Information Management Outsourcing Association of the Philippines or HIMOAP in August 2010. Later, the word ‘outsourcing’ was taken out of the organization’s name and the group was finally called Healthcare Information Management Association of the Philippines.

Programs, Events, and Projects

The HIMAP hosts various events and activities that cater to the needs of HIMS centers, training providers, and vendors and suppliers related to the industry. These include:

Healthcare Information Management Services Conference (HIMSCON). Every year, the HIMAP holds the Healthcare Information Management Services Conference or HIMSCON, a gathering of HIMS centers, training institutions, vendors, and the larger business community. During the conference, attendees and speakers discuss the current trends in healthcare system and solutions and how they disrupt the healthcare industry. The HIMSCON features presentations from domain leaders and industry experts, panel discussions with top industry executives, as well as an exhibit of vendors and support service providers. Forward-looking as the event may be, the HIMSCON also devotes time to look back at the year’s achievements and examine the factors that affect the positioning of the Philippines as a leading HIMS destination.

Quarterly General Membership Meeting. While the HIMSCON is well attended by industry players, HIMAP’s quarterly general membership meeting is exclusive to the group’s members. The general meeting is for inducting new HIMAP members and discussing issues that are of interest to the group, such as the future and challenges of having office spaces in Manila. Significant time is also spent discussing and developing key organization projects, such as the benefits and issues that accompany the growth of the country’s New Wave Cities.

How to Join HIMAP

There are 3 membership types in HIMAP. The first type is general membership, which is open to any duly registered corporation, partnership, or single proprietorship that operates any business concerned with healthcare information management documentation. Second is associate membership, which is open to any duly registered corporation, partnership, or single proprietorship that is engaged in healthcare information management training, as well as any educational institution that provides HIM-related transcription courses. The third and last type, affiliate membership, can be divided into 2 subtypes: individual membership for individuals employed by the companies under general membership, and corporate, which is open to vendors that provide products or services intended for the medical transcription industry.

To join, the applicant should fill out the application form, which can be downloaded on the HIMAP website, and submit it along with the company’s SEC Registration or DTI Certificate. The HIMAP also requires the company’s business profile, board of directors, annual revenue, and other pertinent information.

A Brighter Future for the IT-BPM Industry

Together with the Philippine government, the Information Technology and Business Process Association of the Philippines (IBPAP), and other organizations that are promoting the IT-BPM industry in the country, the HIMAP is putting a lot of effort into achieving the goals set in the IT-BPM Roadmap 2016-2022. Among the goals it hopes to accomplish in the next few years are directly employing 1.5 million personnel, which will bring the total number of direct and indirect employees under the IT-BPM industry to 7.6 million. Of these numbers, 73% are in mid- to high-level positions and 500,000 are based outside the National Capital Region. At the same time, the IT-BPM industry hopes to bring in USD 40 billion in revenue and take as much as 15% of the global IT-BPM market share.

A lot of work needs to be done to reach these numbers, and the HIMAP is making every effort to grow its membership and contribute to the challenging tasks ahead. By sharing best practices, offering professional support, and enabling its members to understand and respond to the changing needs of the industry, the HIMAP is on the right track to reaching its goals.

first contact center in the country in 1992, this industry has grown to the point where it’s expected to overtake OFW remittances.

Information Technology and Business Process Association of the Philippines (IBPAP)

More than just a lucrative enterprise, the information technology-business process outsourcing (IT-BPO) industry in the Philippines boosts the economy of the country and provides millions of Filipinos with steady, high-paying jobs. From the establishment of the first contact center in the country in 1992, this industry has grown to the point where it’s expected to overtake OFW remittances.  

This boom isn’t just a happy accident. In fact, it required concerted effort from government bodies and various organizations to set the country up as an attractive destination for multinational companies. Spearheading the many programs designed to position the Philippines as a promising prospect for the industry is the Information Technology and Business Process Association of the Philippines or IBPAP.

IBPAP serves as the go-to information resource and advocacy gateway for the industry. To assist investors who want to set up operations in the country and to ensure a smooth development process, the group offers briefing at every step of the investment process as well as timely and relevant research. Aside from these, IBPAP also provides ongoing support to various initiatives, knowledge sharing, and networking opportunities to its member companies.  

A Quick History Lesson

After its inception in 2004, what was then known as the Business Process Association of the Philippines (BPAP) immediately set to work by coordinating with the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) in developing Information Technology-Business Process Management (IT-BPM) courses. Between 2007 and 2009, the organization saw the launch of Roadmap 2010, which was followed by the New Wave Cities Program. During this time, the Philippines was awarded as the Best Outsourcing Destination 3 times and recognized by Tholons, a leading strategic advisory firm for global outsourcing and research, as the #2 Outsourcing Destination.

In 2010, BPAP launched Roadmap 2016 with the goal to reach revenues of 25B US$ and hire 1.3M direct employees into the industry. This period was filled with milestones, including the lifting of the prohibition of night work for women in 2011, signing of the Cybercrime Prevention Act (RA 10175) in 2012, and the inclusion of the BPO industry in the Board of Investments (BOI) Investment Priorities Plan between 2009 and 2013.

The organization’s 10th anniversary was an especially eventful year. It was then that its name was changed to Information Technology and Business Process Association of the Philippines. At this time, TESDA also allocated 500M PHP toward its IT-BMP courses, and the Commission on Higher Education (CHED) approved the Service Management Program (SMP), an academic specialization track that means to impart basic business knowledge in students.

Initiatives, Programs, and Projects

In line with its goal to usher the sustainable growth of the IT-BPO industry in the country, IBPAP offers the following programs:

Service Management Program (SMP)
Funded by CHED, the SMP specialization track  is an industry-designed program that reinforces the competencies and skills of the students enrolled in business administration (BA) and information technology (IT) courses. To effectively nurture competencies and develop skills necessary for organization success and business leadership, this nationwide program includes 15 units of electives and 600 hours of internship. It is expected to produce 2,000 students who are well-prepared for their internship in IT-BPM companies.

Part of the SMP is training faculty members to teach business communications, systems thinking, and service culture, among other subjects that will significantly improve a student’s chance of success in pursuing a career in the IT-BPM industry. As of March 2016, the program has successfully trained over 600 BA and IT faculty members from 16 state universities and colleges across the country. In addition to that number, another 622 educators have also completed either the Basic English Skills Training or the Advanced English Proficiency Training, programs that are aimed to improve their teaching efficiency.

Lean Six Sigma Scholarship Program
The Lean Six Sigma Scholarship Program is developed and administered by the University of the Philippines through the National Engineering Center. It is a part of the ICT Scholarship and Training Program of the Department of Science and Technology-Information and Communications Technology Office (DOST-ICTO).

The Lean Six Sigma course is designed to equip participants with the essential tools for improving organizational performance and efficiently carrying out sustainable projects. By developing the participant’s knowledge, skills, and attitude through the use of case studies, digital tools, and hands on exercises, the course aims to build a culture of operational excellence.

Research Initiatives
IBPAP conducts research projects that are necessary to sustain the growth of the IT-BMP industry, usually in partnership with government organizations such as the DOST-ICTO. The Next Wave Cities Report is a biannual assessment of the different cities in the country and provides investors with information on talent availability, cost, infrastructure, and other aspects that impact their business. Connected to the Next Wave Cities Report is the Talent Deep Dive Report, which monitors and provides detailed information on talent in possible IT-BPM host locations.

Programs for Prospective Members
The organization conducts a monthly open house for potential members and provides all attendees with an overview of its programs. To ensure that it is presenting topics and issues that its industry and non-industry members are interested in, IBPAP conducts annual surveys and monthly roundtable discussions.

These are just a few of the group’s initiatives. IBPAP also partners with national agencies to improve the health and working condition in the industry, as well as to conduct continuous efforts to ensure the global competitiveness of those who want to join the IT-BPM industry in the country.

Future Endeavors

In 2016, IBPAP launched the Philippine IT-BPM Roadmap 2022, Accelerate PH, with the aim to make the Filipino talent future-ready and capable of leveraging technological advancements. Among the targets of the IBPAP for 2022 are the following:

  • 1.8M direct jobs
  • 7.8M direct and indirect IT-BPM employment
  • 500,000 jobs outside of the National Capital Region (NCR)
  • 73% mid- to high-value jobs
  • 40B US$ in revenue
  • 15% global IT-BPM market share

Picking up from the lessons and successes of the roadmaps that preceded it, Accelerate PH focuses on the subsectors of the IT-BPM industry in the country, which includes animation and game development, contact center and BPO, global in-house center, health information management, and IT and software development operations.

In order to maintain the country’s position as a competitive industry destination, IBPAP and its partner organizations — the Animation Council of the Philippines, Inc., Contact Center Association of the Philippines, Game Developers Association of the Philippines, Global In-House Center Council, Healthcare Information Management Association of the Philippines, and Philippine Software Industry Association — look to further developing local talents. This, in turn, will allow the IT-BPM industry in the country to rise up to meet the ever-changing challenges and demands of the market.

 started a revolution that would have nations competing with each other in an entirely new battleground: software development.

Philippine Software Industry Association (PSIA)

No other scientific or technological breakthrough has ever changed the world or the way we live more than the invention of the computer. Not only did it kick off a series of technological discoveries that would eventually see us going to outer space—as well as the creation of the internet as we know it— but it also started a revolution that would have nations competing with each other in an entirely new battleground: software development.

It is in this arena that the Philippines, a country known for its lush archipelago as well as its prolific and versatile workforce, stakes its claim to be recognized as a staunch competitor. Such an effort is spearheaded by the Philippine Software Industry Association (PSIA), an organization established in the 1980s by eleven of the brightest software industry leaders of the country at the time.

With its aim to support software development startups as well as create and nurture homegrown talent, the PSIA has become one of the major players driving the Philippines towards global acclaim and recognition in the software development market, as well as in the information technology and business process management (IT-BPM) industry.

About PSIA and Its History

The Philippine Software Industry Association is a non-stock, non-profit organization dedicated to driving the growth of the local IT industry in order to promote the Philippines as the preferred choice for software development services. The group is composed of 150 seasoned IT businesses that run the gamut in terms of size—from small and medium businesses to multinational enterprises—and enjoys dedicated governmental support from the Department of Science and Technology. Cognizant of the importance of diversity as a key factor in any organization’s strength, the PSIA also features prominent players and Filipino-owned companies from abroad.

Since its establishment in 1988, the PSIA has collaborated with the government in the creation of initiatives and policies geared towards accelerating the growth of the Philippine software industry, thereby boosting its competitiveness in the international software scene. Through this, the Philippines made its name in the global market as an attractive and highly competitive off-shoring location.

The group has also spearheaded efforts in developing local talent through multifaceted efforts, one of which is the creation of SPRING.PH, an industry platform dedicated to supporting Filipino software startups and assisting in the creation and commercialization of globally-recognized software products in various categories.

In the same vein, the PSIA also participates in the creation of programming courses and IT-focused school curricula alongside the country’s educational bodies, namely the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) and the Philippine Commission of Higher Education (CHED).

Finally, it targets the development of skills, capabilities, and expertise of local software development firms and improves IT employee recruitment and retention by holding regular enablement seminars, training workshops, and scholarship programs. These activities also serve to bridge the gap between students and currently-employed professionals, ensuring a more qualified pool of IT and Computer Science students to join the workforce upon graduation.

The PSIA’s Highlights and Achievements

The PSIA’s aggressive drive in pushing the Philippines to the forefront of the international software development market has resulted in achievements that, in turn, netted significant gains not just for the local IT industry but for the nation at large. Some of these achievements include:

  • Earning the country the distinction of being the 2007 Best Off-Shoring Destination of the Year by the National Outsourcing Association (NOA) of the United Kingdom. This is due to collaboratively developed policies and initiatives as well as the international competitiveness of the local industry.
  • Generating USD 1.6 billion in industry revenue in 2012 as a result of aggressive promotion of the Philippines in new service line and geographies, while at the same time enhancing the country’s branding as a top IT-BPM destination and conducting targeted efforts to convert prospective inspectors.
  • Hiring 57,000 full-time employees in the same year, with each employee contributing USD 20,000 per annum to industry earnings.
  • Earning Manila and Cebu the third and eight spot in the Top 8 Global Outsourcing Destinations in 2012.

The PSIA is also known for directly pursuing international clients and investors to garner revenue and leads for the local IT industry. In 2016, the PSIA led a delegation to Japan in order to participate in the Software Development Expo (SODEC), mainly to promote Philippine IT-BPM services. This visit brought in partnership deals, service agreements, and leads worth US2.5 million for PSIA members and partners.

PSIA Programs and Activities

The PSIA holds many programs and activities pursuant of its main goal. These activities are divided according to separate groups within the PSIA that handle a specific mandate of the organization.

The Software Products Incubation Group, or SPRING.PH, governs the PSIA’s initiative to nurture local startups through encouragement, education, and support. As of 2016, close to 50 companies and 24 product teams have joined SPRING.PH. Its activities are as follows:

  • Monthly meet ups, dubbed as “Techtalks,” for startups to foster a sense of community and competition in the local IT and software development industry.
  • Quarterly LaunchPad events, wherein participating teams are given assistance to realize their software product ideas with monetary and coaching assistance.
  • Monthly coaching sessions to assist and instruct startups and product teams on challenges and issues they are currently facing through the use of software development.
  • Startup competitions for schools to help foster student interest in software application, IT, computer science, etc.

The PSIA Technical Council consists of a group of technical experts in the Philippine software industry and is tasked to provide technical resources for the PSIA’s various initiatives. This is done while also honing the developers of tomorrow through the re-tuning of educational curriculums, to match international competitive standards and better prepare graduates for the industry. Since its formation in 2009, its members have partaken in the following activities:

  • Accrediting trainers to conduct programming courses under TESDA’s Training For Work Scholarship Program (TWSP)
  • Participating in CHED’s accreditation of Computer Science, Information Technology, and Information Systems degree programs
  • Participating in the creation of curricula for short programming courses for TESDA
  • Participating in the revision of the Computer Science curriculum for CHED
  • Conducting training for university CS and IT faculty throughout the country on subjects relevant to the industry
  • Conducting talks and workshops on topics relevant to the industry, such as technology careers, Lean startup and Agile Software Development, among others
  • Writing tech-based articles in various publications and blogs
  • Mentoring in startup events

The Capability Development Committee of the PSIA, or CapDev, is the organization’s educational arm. As such it is tasked with supporting the improvement and development of the skills, assets, and capabilities of the companies that make up the Philippine software industry. This is done through seminars, conventions and trainings that focus on the growth of the currently-employed professional.  Their main initiatives include:

  • Annual Enablement Seminars (ES)
  • Expanded Learning on IT Services (ELITES) Training
  • Training for Work Scholarship Program (TWSP)
  • Skills Standards for IT Professionals (ITSS)

On top of all these, the PSIA also conducts surveys and studies in order to decipher the trends of the software industry and maximize growth.

Future Goals of the PSIA

The PSIA is committed to become the driving force behind the Filipino software industry as well as IT at large. The group continues its current initiatives and programs in order to further nurture homegrown talent and interest in IT. At the same time, it promotes the country to offshore clients interested in investing in a workforce renowned for its versatility, skill, and peerless command of the English language. Its mandate to improve the proficiency and skillset of local software development companies is also set to persist into the foreseeable future, while also fostering alliances and friendships among its members and other associations here and abroad.

Government Bodies

One key governing body that happily observes and tends to the budding relationships of adaptable

Board of Investments (BOI)

A wealth of good investment advice now exists for the diverse investment opportunities that are available not only on your local territories, but abroad. According to Ben Graham, “The individual investor should act consistently as an investor and not as a speculator,” meaning that one who has funds to pool must pool them wisely—to invest based on fact, and not fiction.

The Philippines must take many more opportunities to see its political and economic climates grow. But there is no denying that over the decades, and across several tech revolutions, the Philippines has fostered a goldmine of raw talent, ready and resilient enough to work in world-class business environments.

One key governing body that happily observes and tends to the budding relationships of adaptable Filipinos and like-minded foreign investors is the Department of Trade and Industry’s (DTI) Board of Investments (BOI). Read on to know about the BOI’s goals, milestones, and initiatives to make good on the country’s foreign investments.

About BOI

An attached agency of the DTI, the BOI is the lead investment promotion agency of the Philippine government. Following the directive of its parent organization, the BOI aims to promote investments in industries and in the regions for balanced economic development.

BOI’s mandate is to generate local and foreign investments and develop globally competitive industries, thereby increasing employment among Filipinos through the responsible use of the country’s resources, guided by the principles of private initiative and government cooperation. Toward this, the BOI upholds core values of competency, efficient service, integrity, professionalism, discipline, and strong leadership.

Outsource Accelerator directs would-be investors toward the impeccable service and assistance of the BOI for easy investment information, briefers on investment laws in the Philippines and, of course, investment assistance that to your convenience, may be done online.

Unprecedented Investment Growth

To speak more of the growth that the BOI has overseen in the last few months alone, it was reported in December 2017 by ABS-CBN News that the agency notched an all-time high of PHP 616.7 billion in investment approvals that calendar year, which is the highest that the agency has seen in its 50 years of service.  

The country’s top investors for foreign investment projects last year were Japan, which contributed PHP 8.864 billion to the Philippine economy; Singapore, with PHP 3.497 billion; Australia, with PHP 1.996 billion; the British Virgin Islands, with PHP 1.084 billion, and the Netherlands, with PHP 1.074 billion.

DTI Secretary Ramon Lopez noted that this PHP 616.7 billion in investment approvals for as many as 426 projects was 39.5 percent higher than the figure tallied last 2016, and a surplus of 23.5 percent higher than the PHP 500 billion that was projected earlier last year.

2018 is also off to an excellent start, as the investment projects approved by the dynamic Board reached up to more than 6 times (a 538 percent surge) in value from that exact time last year, from PHP 8 billion to PHP 51.3 billion.

The BOI has since monitored all-time high levels of investment activity. What services can they offer to new foreign investors, especially from the IT-BPM industry, that are now coming to stake claims in the country’s valuable market?

Making Investments Easy and Accessible

For one, the BOI shows favor to both local and foreign investors in the sector of ICT, and for these it offers a separate range of incentives, which include:

  • Income-tax holiday
  • Exemption from taxes and duties on imported spare parts
  • Exemption from wharfage dues and export taxes, duties, imposts, and fees
  • Tax credits
  • Additional deductions from taxable income.

To jumpstart investment activity, look no further than BOI’s One Window Network (BOI-OWN), the Board’s own cloud-based web portal and mobile application system that promotes full transparency and accountability through its Customer Relation Management (CRM) application/system.

According to their website, BOI-OWN’s system offers online investment facilitation of investors’ pre-investment and post investment queries and concerns, request for inbound missions, and joint venture facilitation. Through the portal, and through conscientious email and SMS notifications from BOI’s designated account officers, future investors can easily track and monitor concerns anytime, and anywhere.

Note that before a foreign corporation can engage in business in the Philippines, it must first secure the necessary licenses or registration certificates from the appropriate government agencies. The registration process will begin with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). Then, if it is agreed upon by the authorities that the proposed project or activity qualifies for incentives, the foreign investor may file its application with the appropriate government agency depending on the project and location.

 

A Sunny Business Climate

What returns will the country promise to foreign investors if they set out to create ripples in the Philippines? For one, we can promise the wide range of Filipino skills, talents, and personalities that will come with the choice to invest and do business; for another, we promise a business climate that is nursed by good governance and our country’s heightened pursuit of economic growth and sustainability.

The BOI will track the business climate of the Philippines by not only facilitating and recording incoming foreign investments. It will also lay out easy groundwork to orient would-be investors and guide them every step of the way through our country’s bylaws, processes, and upcoming benefits.

This is in line with what the Philippine IT-BPM Roadmap 2022, or Accelerate PH, anticipates for the growth of the IT-BPM sector: that the Philippines is steadily becoming future-ready on all fronts, and that the government is helping it do so. The IT-BPM industry in its current form would be naught without the support of the Philippine government in nurturing its business investment ecosystem. The BOI truly does aid in the ease of doing business, the provision of investment incentives, and the guardianship of a conducive policy and regulatory environment.

Many key players now see the country as a nest for partners and their upcoming projects on technology. Is it the same circumstance for your IT-BPM company, which is looking to grow its roots in new soil? The Philippines may be part of the future that you seek.

The Department of Information and Communications Technology first began as the Commission on Information and Communications Technology (CICT)

Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT)

No other country seems to have had its landscape changed by the introduction of the internet more than the Philippines. The country, in addition to having one of the most connected populations in the world, has also become one of the top competitors in the information technology and business process management (IT-BPM) industry. In fact, the Philippine IT-BPM industry has become so lucrative that it is believed to soon overtake OFW remittances as the top source of revenue in the country.

While most of the credit for this success can be placed on the versatile and English-proficient Filipino workforce, some of it must also be directed to the many agencies and organizations that helped layout the infrastructure for the local industry. One of those is the Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT), a branch of the government that has been working hard to have the country catch up to the rest of the world in terms of internet speed, reliability, and advancement.

DICT History

The Department of Information and Communications Technology first began as the Commission on Information and Communications Technology (CICT), a preceding agency created on January 12, 2004 as a transitory measure in the creation of a department specifically focused on the development of ICT in the country.

The CICT was composed of agencies within the government that were tasked with handling computer technology as well as those whose main function has to deal with communication matters, namely the National Computer Center (NCC), the Telecommunications Office (TELOF), and the communications branch of the Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC). To help with policy coordination, the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) and the Philippine Postal Corporation (Philpost) were involved with the CICT as well.  The CICT would go on to endure various revamps and restructuring until it was formally organized and recognized as the DICT.

As a part of the government’s executive branch, the DICT is committed to providing every Filipino access to vital ICT infrastructures and services, while also ensuring the sustainable growth of ICT-enabled industries that can lead to the creation of more jobs. This is evident through campaigns that deal with providing free public Wi-Fi access as well as improved Philippine broadband internet download speeds and reliability.

The DICT is also focused on developing and supporting ICT-based industries in the many rural regions of the country, working with LGUs and other stakeholders in the planning and implementation of ICT infrastructure in these areas. Such an effort would make these underdeveloped areas a preferred location for BPO centers and other ICT industries.

Finally, the DICT is also mandated to address the growing threat of cybercrime in the Philippines. With the Cybercrime Investigation and Coordinating Center (CICC), it has already begun formulating strategies, initiatives, and frameworks to protect the nation’s critical and non-critical infostructures. Alongside this, the department is moving forward with the establishment of a national emergency response team in case of mass hacking and cyberattacks.

Achievements and Highlights

The DICT has been responsible for many moves to provide online connectivity to as much of the Philippines as possible. One of these is the widely-successful Free Public Wi-Fi project, a project set to provide free internet connectivity to the public by integrating Wi-Fi hotspots all over the country, especially in public places and facilities.

Today, thousands of public schools, parks/plazas, and government hospitals all over the country enjoy free Wi-Fi access along with hundreds of libraries, state universities, colleges and more. Public transportation hubs such as seaports, airports, and train stations have benefited from this plan as well, with the millions of passengers traveling through them every day able to connect through fast and reliable Wi-Fi at no cost.

Programs and Activities

Besides its ongoing campaigns to provide faster and more affordable internet access to the entire Philippines, the DICT also has the following programs currently taking place:

  • Tech4ED. This project, which stands for Technology for Education, to gain Employment, train Entrepreneurs towards Economic Development, involves creating public facilities in rural and remote areas. Its aim is to provide access to ICT-enabled services and content to communities and economically struggling sectors of the population. These services include eEduSkills, which delivers e-Learning on demand to address the education divide, and eAssist, which focuses on providing learning and continuous skill development opportunities for digital inclusion and business-running.
  • iGov. iGov is a massive undertaking that hopes to make all government ICT services connected and available through one single portal. This setup makes it more convenient for citizens to access government services, and it also harmonizes each service’s function with each other. Other government services that have yet to make the move to the digital realm are also being prepared to join this network. Once completed, iGov will serve 160 government agencies, thus allowing citizens to use whatever government services they need without ever leaving home.

Future Endeavors

In its celebration of its first anniversary in June 2017, the DICT unveiled the National Broadband Plan, a forward-looking strategy to provide faster internet download speeds to businesses, government agencies, and households. With this plan, the DICT hopes to not only help the Philippines catch up to the broadband speeds that its neighboring countries are enjoying, but also to further stimulate ICT-related industries, such as BPOs and software development firms.

It was also on May 2, 2017 that the DICT unveiled National Cybersecurity Plan 2022, as a response to the ever-growing incidence of cybercrime coming from domestic as well as international sources. This program is set to enact measures to protect critical and non-critical ICT infrastructures in the country, as well as also to help bring about a cybersecurity-educated society.

Finally, the DICT is part of the many government agencies that is contributing to the realization of Accelerate PH, the IT-BPM Roadmap to 2022. This roadmap aims to ensure that the Filipino workforce is future-ready and capable of leveraging the technological advancements of tomorrow. Some of the targets of Accelerate PH include the following:

  • 1.8 million direct jobs
  • 7.8 million direct and indirect IT-BPM employment
  • 500,000 jobs outside the National Capital Region (NCR)
  • USD 40 billion in total revenue
  • 15% global IT-BPM share

With its ongoing programs and future plans, it is evident that the DICT is fully focused on bringing the Philippines to the level it needs in order to compete with its neighbors. This focus makes it ideal for investors and companies abroad to put their resources in the nation, especially now that it’s steadily working towards a faster and more interconnected future.

Building some of the most important bridges between IT-BPM companies

Department of Trade and Industry (DTI)

We envision the trade meccas of the past being fostered first in public marketplaces, then in commercial centers, then even in our modern-day malls. But a number of the trade hubs that do excellently today flourish online. The types of businesses that are being engaged as of now range from the local to the international, and many operate at peak speed, efficiency, and rate of exchange.

The information technology-business processing management (IT-BPM) industry was one of the first to thrive with online business models, and over the decades, Filipino workers established a whole brand unto themselves for being skilled, warm and accessible, and easily adaptable to the commercial needs of other cultures.

Building some of the most important bridges between IT-BPM companies—both the mainstays and the up-and-coming players—and their Filipino employees, is the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI). Get to know the government’s forerunner in spearheading the Philippines’ commercial activities, as well as that of its foreign partners.

About DTI

The DTI is the Philippine government’s primary coordinative, promotional, facilitative, and regulatory arm with regard to its trade, industry, and investment activities.

It is also the parent agency of offices such as the Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines (IPOPHL), National Development Company (NDC), Philippine Economic Zone Authority (PEZA), the Philippine International Trading Corporation (PITC), Philippine Pharma Procurement Incorporated (PPPI), Construction Industry Authority of the Philippines (CIAP), Board of Investments (BOI), Regional Operations Group (ROG), Small Business Corporation (SBC Corp.), Center for International Trade Expositions and Missions (CITEM), Design Center of the Philippines (DCP), and the Philippine Trade Training Center (PTTC).

DTI’s pledge to the nation, and to the partners of Filipino businessmen and workers worldwide, is “enabling business, empowering consumers.” A new spirit to this pledge came at the turn of the millennium and at the beginning of the digital revolution, with the signing of the Electronic Commerce Act (ECA), or Republic Act No. 8792, into law on June 14, 2000.

R.A. 8792 granted legal recognition to electronic forms of data messages, documents, signatures, transactions, storage of information, and stipulated penalties for piracy, hacking, access of data without consent, and other violations. The sections under Section 29 of the said law also detailed DTI’s authority to direct and supervise the promotion and development of e-commerce in the Philippines, in coordination with government agencies of related mandates.

This law was one of the most important measures in the rise of investments in the business process outsourcing (BPO) sector, or what we widely know now as the IT-BPM sector. By the 2010s, the IT-BPM industry had notched more than USD 18.1 billion in revenues.

Continuing Trends of Growth

Citing that the IT-BPM is truly one of the drivers in the Philippines’ competitive advantage for both voice and non-voice services, DTI Secretary Ramon Lopez has pledged the government’s full support in the industry.

“The Philippines has been growing at more than twice the global market growth rate over the past 5 years,” the Secretary said in a keynote at the Information Technology and Business Process Association of the Philippines (IBPAP) membership assembly last September 2017. He added that the total global opportunity for outsourced IT-BPM was expected to grow from USD 166 billion to USD 250 billion by 2022, which is in the near future.

With a 100-billion dollar upward trajectory predicted to come, DTI has enjoined for the government, the Philippine private sector, and all foreign partners to adapt a new roadmap to sustain this development, create more jobs, and contribute to the inclusive growth of the economy.

The previous IT-BPM Industry Roadmap 2011-2016 oversaw target revenues of up to USD 25 billion and an employee base of more than 1.3 million. Roadmap 2022, or Accelerate PH, seeks to heighten this value, as DTI welcomes the sector’s acquisition of more projects for software development, healthcare information management, creative services, and product and engineering services.

Wide Opportunities in the Industry

That said, the DTI has always worked closely with the IBPAP in following the IT-BPM’s industry initiatives within the four action areas: (1) widening and deepening human capital by scaling up industry public-private partnerships; (2) strengthening Philippine attractiveness as an investment destination through advocacy activities; (3) achieving Roadmap 2016 goals by leading cross-sectoral efforts; and (4) building Philippine IT-BPM brand globally through marketing programs.

In addition, IT-BPM was brought up as a priority in future regional business plans that DTI, the current chairman agency of the ASEAN Economic Ministers (AEM) and the Committee on Business and Investment Promotion (CBIP), unveiled to ASEAN.

DTI also spearheaded a second ASEAN Young Entrepreneurs Carnival to tighten a network of new regional trailblazers for the areas of information technology, business process outsourcing, and financial technology, and other sectors such as food, agriculture, logistics, and startups. Young ASEAN entrepreneurs for these sectors will also be empowered through the recently launched ASEAN Young Entrepreneurs Association Charter.

A Future We Can Keep Up With

Thus, the DTI is well on track in doing its part for Roadmap 2022 and the stakeholders of the IT-BPM industry. Accelerate PH is a new framework from the previous roadmaps to facilitate the new times, pushing toward the expansion of the Philippines’ market share and the increasing of the complexity and values of IT-BPM capabilities.

While DTI, its attached agencies, and Filipino businessmen and workers unite toward improving trade and industry, it’s your chance to become a partner and investor. The country’s homegrown talents are ready to fill any gaps that foreign companies have for specialized work. They are also in the right environment to keep up with numerous developments in technology and competitive demand.

It is just the right time to enter the Philippine market for the IT-BPM industry. The years comprising the previous roadmap, from 2011 to 2016, have seen optimum growth happen in the sector. But more importantly, new pathways have been opened to trade hubs and globally-reaching businesses all over the world, ready to prosper in 2022 and in the years to come.

On Growth and Nationwide Connectivity

National Telecommunications Commission (NTC)

A direct overseer of a “tech revolution” that has happened in the Philippines—and the blossoming of tech hubs all around the country’s 3 island groups—is its telecommunications sector. In the past decade, the telecom groups have shifted from their rule of traditional broadcast media to multimedia. They are behind a spurt in the business activity, as well as the fulfillment of everyday communication needs, of Filipinos.

From its beginnings in 1979 to its current role in the new millennium, the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) has managed the country’s expectations for telecommunications service increasing in bandwidth. They’ve seen us transition from analog to digital, and from cellular phones and desktop computers to smartphones and tablets. Here’s what you should know about one of the most important regulatory bodies in the Philippines’ communication and commercial sectors, and how to keep “wired” to your potential business partners in the country.  

About NTC

NTC is an official attached agency of the Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT). The agency’s official mandate has the following scope:

  • to regulate the installation, operation and maintenance of radio stations both for private and public use (Radio Control Law, Act No. 3846, as amended),
  • to regulate and supervise the provision of public telecommunications services (Radio Control Law, Act No. 3846, as amended and Public Telecommunications Policy Act of 1995, RA No. 7925),
  • to manage the radio spectrum (Radio Control Law, Act No. 3846, as amended and Public Telecommunications Policy Act of 1995, RA No. 7925), and to regulate and supervise radio and television broadcast stations, cable television (CATV) and pay television (EO No. 546 and EO No. 205).

The calendar year 2020 is not too far in sight, and from now until then, the NTC upholds a vision to become a world-class regulatory agency and leader in the global telecommunications and information sector.  

Toward the Philippines’ overall progress and development, NTC’s mission is to shape a responsive regulatory environment for telecommunications and information infrastructure and services. They work with Philippine companies to ensure viable and affordable communications systems for all, and govern toward the well-being of the Filipino people in the ever-evolving information landscape.

On Growth and Nationwide Connectivity

With its parent agency DICT, NTC fosters an initiative toward National Connectivity. A background paper in the World Bank’s World Development Report of 2016, titled “Exploring the Relationship between Broadband and Economic Growth,” asserts connectivity as a growth driver, and noted that a 10 ten percent point increase in mobile broadband penetration boosted the Philippines’ gross domestic product (GDP) by 0.32 percent.

Connectivity has yet to become accessible and consistent to all Filipino people, throughout all Philippine regions and districts. But strengthening these linkages between the localities, as well as outside of the country, remains a priority for NTC and the country’s primary telco players. Our circumstances will only get better throughout the years—and the Philippines might see a positive shake-up to the industry, and to online accessibility, in the near future, via entry of fresh blood.

A Future Newcomer to the Philippine Telco-sphere

In the first months of 2018, DICT held the First and Second Stakeholders Consultations on the Entry of a New Major Telecommunications Player in the Public Telecommunications Market. Last February 19, DICT and NTC released a draft Memorandum Circular (MC) with the terms of reference (TOR) for the selection and assignment of frequencies for the new major player.

The population of 300 stakeholders, which comprised local telecommunication players, embassy representatives, and the media, were slated to provide input for the MC before it was finalized for implementation by March 2018.

For decades, the cellular networks and digital services of Globe Telecom and PLDT Inc. (formerly the Philippine Long Distance Telephone Company) have dominated the country’s telecommunications sector. But the introduction of a new player in the future will raise the competitive standard that these companies have in strengthening the cellular and digital networks of Filipinos.

Communicating a Goal for the Future

That said, what do the NTC and the developments in Philippine telecommunications bring to the IT-BPM sector? Why do these matter for our international business partners and clients? And, why should you look forward to reception signal in the Philippines being clear for your company?

A bolstered telecommunications industry—founded on solid business practices, healthy competition, and a collective mindset to harness Philippine potential and connect it elsewhere—establishes just the right business environment for Filipinos and foreign partners to work together.

As a mechanism to groom solid Filipino talent, the Philippine IT-BPM Roadmap 2022, or Accelerate PH, is currently in place. Roadmap 2022 aims to accelerate the growth of the PH IT-BPM industry, and this it does by mapping multi-sector initiatives, strengthening respective domain expertise, leveraging advancements, and cultivating the talents of Filipino workers to be future-ready.

IT-BPM is one of the fastest growing sectors in the sphere of Philippine employment, and thus one of the biggest drivers of our economy. For good reason, the Philippines is one of the most sought-after international investment destinations in IT-BPM services. Filipinos value hard work, resourcefulness and, of course, being well-connected. Fresh new talents are starting to make names for themselves in the specific sectors of Animation and Game Development, Contact Center and BPO, Health Information Management, IT and Software Development, Global In-House Centers Operations, and others. The Filipino brand and standard of service is considered by many to be world-class.

As Roadmap 2022 points out, the IT-BPM industry in the Philippines will be witness to many coming innovations in digital transformation, artificial intelligence, big data and analytics, and evolving delivery models. Thus, all players within the government, private sector, and international business sectors are encouraged to be dynamic and competitive enough to keep up with the changing times.

Look no further than the National Telecommunications Commission for updates on national (consequently, international) connectivity among Filipinos; the developments of our local telco companies (and any future entrants into the Philippine market); and how the Philippines will constantly improve its broadband situation to optimize international working partnerships that are made online, and beyond.   

Chambers of Commerce in the Philippines

These Chambers of Commerce play an important role in connecting and growing businesses in the Philippines by providing helpful information and practical assistance to companies that are planning on outsourcing to the country:

to serve the interests of Philippine and American businesses through the participation of members in promoting their long-term objectives

American Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines (AmCham)

The American Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines or AmCham has been serving businesses in the Philippines for over a hundred years. It stands at the forefront of various development initiatives that are designed to address current and potential business issues, as well as delivers relevant information on different industries through publications and events.

The Chamber started out as the Manila Coffee Round Table, which later became the Manila Merchants Association. While its name has changed over the years, it remains committed to its purpose, which is “to serve the interests of Philippine and American businesses through the participation of members in promoting their long-term objectives, while contributing to the civic and economic development of the Philippines.”

Advocacies and Programs

There are 17 sector committees that provide the Chamber with a 360 view of the Philippine business ecosystem. These committees allow American and non-American businesses to promote common goals that will bring solidarity and develop the business environment in the country.

The sector committees are as follows: agribusiness, energy and power, energy efficiency, environment and urban development, financial services and taxes and tariffs, healthcare and wellness, human capital and resources, information and communications technology, infrastructure and logistics, intellectual property rights, legislative, manufacturing, pharmaceutical, professional women of AmCham, security and disaster resource group, tourism and hospitality, and trade and investment.

The Chamber is also spearheading the following initiatives and projects:

  • The Integrity Initiative – Led by the private sector, this campaign aims to strengthen ethical standards in business in order to level the playing field and foster an environment where companies with integrity can do business with competitive advantage.
  • The Filipino-American Memorial Endowment – Founded in 1986, this non-stock non-profit foundation aims to preserve the tangible reminders of the shared values that spurred Americans, Filipinos, and their allies to fight side-by-side in World War II.
  • The Business Leadership Program – The program offers student leaders a chance to see some of the country’s top American and multinational companies at work. This, hopefully, will inspire them to become committed professionals after they graduate.
  • The American Desk (Amdesk) at the Board of Investments (BoI) – The program, which was initiated in 1992, aims to provide American investors with pre-investment assistance. It also serves as the main liaison for all investment-related concerns and government affairs.
  • The Arangkada Philippines Project (TAPP) – A cooperative agreement with the American Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines, The Arangkada Philippines Project aims to enhance the growth of key economic sectors by advocating for reforms that create a better business environment.
  • The American Chamber Foundation of the Philippines – Established in 1985, the foundation encourages members of the Chamber to use their corporate social responsibility activities to support corporate strategies. It also identifies and partners AmCham members with credible NGOs and other beneficiary organizations.

In addition, the Chamber also publishes business journals and advisories and holds regular events like General Membership Luncheon Meetings, Networking Nights, and Members Mixers.

The Chamber has an office in Metro Manila and Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao chapters. For more information about the American Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines, visit http://www.amchamphilippines.com/.

British Chamber of Commerce Philippines (BCCP) logo

British Chamber of Commerce Philippines (BCCP)

The British Chamber of Commerce Philippines or BCCP represents over 270 member companies and a network of over 600 entrepreneurs and senior executives from multinational companies and small and midsized businesses. The BCCP was founded in 1997 under the name British Business Association, and it wasn’t until 2001 that it took up its current name. It aims to support the business objectives and social interest of its members in the British and Philippine communities and serve as the voice of the British business community in the country.

To support its members, the Chamber provides various networking opportunities by organizing business and social events. It also keeps its members up to date by providing information on subjects relevant to their business development, such as economic, taxation, and legal information. At the same time, the BCCP makes it easy for UK companies to promote their brand by offering network listings and opportunities to speak in events.

The Chamber is a part of the Britain in South East Asia (BiSEA) network, which allows its members to attend events and advertise in Chamber magazines at member rates. Among the other members of the BiSEA are British Chamber of Commerce in Cambodia, British Chamber of Commerce in Indonesia, British Malaysian Chamber of Commerce, British Chamber of Commerce Singapore, British Chamber of Commerce Thailand, Britain Brunei Business Forum, British Business Group Vietnam, and British Chamber of Commerce in Myanmar.

Services and Programs

To aid UK companies in the UK and the Philippines in reaching their potential, the BCCP offers them the following services:

  • Business Opportunities. The Chamber can provide access to business opportunities that it has sourced from all sectors across the country.
  • Contact Identification and Introduction Service. To assist in marketing strategy, the BCCP offers tailored contact and introduction services and business to government (B2G) and business to business (B2B) referrals.
  • Event Management Service. The BCCP provides this service on behalf of UK companies that specialize in product launches and networking events.
  • Hot Desk and Meeting Room. Companies can arrange for short-term hot desk and meeting room facilities at their office location.
  • Market Entry Consultancy and Support. The BCCP offers consultancy services that will help UK companies in reaching their potential during the market entry, market development, and regional expansion phase. This service includes providing research and analysis on consumer trends and price comparisons, as well as arranging in-market organizational visits.
  • Professional Business and Sector Services. The BCCP offers access to a network of member and non-member professionals and organizations that provide tailored services and support. Access to the network can make setting up a business in the country much easier, plus it can assist in the local registration of the business and ensuring its fiscal compliance.
  • Product Regulation and Labelling Advice. To assist in market entry, the BCCP’s in-market delivery partners provide UK companies with access to customized regulation and labelling advice.
  • Translation, Interpretation, and Cultural Services. This service is provided by a network of partner companies in the Philippines that offer professional culture services such as translation and interpretation.

There are 4 types of membership in the BCCP. These are Platinum, Gold, Corporate, and Individual, and each offers a host of benefits such as sponsorship opportunities, website linkages, directory listings, access to the Chamber’s Trading Zone, and advertising opportunities.

For more information about the programs and services of the British Chamber of Commerce Philippines or its membership requirements and benefits, visit http://www.britcham.org.ph/.

 

Australia-New Zealand Chamber of Commerce Philippines (ANZCHAM) logo

Australia-New Zealand Chamber of Commerce Philippines (ANZCHAM)

The Australia-New Zealand Chamber of Commerce Philippines, Inc. or ANZCHAM is the premier Australian and New Zealand business organization in the country. It is one of the oldest and most active Chambers in the country, visibly supporting and promoting business relationships between the Philippines, Australia, and New Zealand. This community maintains constant communication among its members as well as fosters a strong relationship with its partner organizations in both the public and private sector.

The Chamber was first known as the Australian Business Group or ABG, an organization set up in 1974 for Australian entrepreneurs who are based in or visiting Manila. In 1982, the Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry Philippines, Inc. was registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission, formally representing its 61 regular members and 15 corporate members. Finally, the New Zealand component was added in 1986.

Membership to the ANZCHAM

The ANZCHAM welcomes new members to its thriving community. It offers 7 membership levels. Corporate membership is open to companies that have commercial relations or wish to establish business relations between the Philippines, Australia, and New Zealand. Associate membership is for affiliates or subsidiaries of corporate members or non-profit bodies. Provincial membership is for firms and persons that are based in areas more than 100 km from Manila.

Individual membership, on the other hand, is open to individuals who are neither affiliated with any company nor are lined up to become the corporate designated member of their company. Individuals between 18 to 35 years of age may apply for a Professionals Under 35 membership, while those who have already retired from employment or are unemployed may become a Retiree member.

In behalf of its members, the ANZCHAM:

  • Carries out activities that represent best practices in terms of Corporate Social Responsibility.
  • Collects, collates, and disseminates pertinent business, commerce, and industry information, as well as ushers the exchange of ideas concerning industry and commerce between the 3 countries.
  • Directly or through other business organization, supports its members in their specific business, trade, or investment issues.
  • Establishes links and partnerships between Chambers of Commerce/Industry and private bodies in the 3 countries.
  • Makes representations to the Philippine, Australian, and New Zealand government and other organizations.
  • Promotes rules, usages, and practices of trade and investment that facilitate business operations.
  • Promotes trade and investment, as well as commercial relations between the people of the 3 countries, thereby enhancing business linkages.

Sectoral Committees

There are 3 sectoral committees in the Chamber, the biggest of which is the Resources Development Committee with over 70 members. This committee supports, in particular, mining companies with interests in the Philippines. It provides advice to investors, communities, and other concerned parties, as well as promotes mining-related courses to students.

Next, the BPO & IT Services committee supports service providers and clients in the BPO industry, including those in the captive and shared services sector. In addition to promoting dialogue among the industry stakeholders, the committee also cooperates with government organizations.

Last, the Infrastructure Committee represents members in the field of engineering, construction, and consultancy by addressing issues that are common to the Philippines, Australia, and New Zealand.

To join the Australian-New Zealand Chamber of Commerce (Philippines) Inc. and for more information about its programs and activities, visit http://anzcham.com/.

Canadian Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines (CanCham) logo

Canadian Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines (CanCham)

The Canadian Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines or CanCham represents, supports, and promotes Canada-Philippines business interests. Established in 1989, this non-profit organization opens its membership to Canadian, Philippine, and other third country corporations and individuals that have Canada-Philippines business interests.

CanCham aims to improve the Philippine environment for national and international business. This it does by initiating its own projects and supporting advocacies under the Joint Foreign Chambers of Commerce (JFC), of which the Chamber is a member.

Some of the CanCham and JFC’s top priorities are:

  • Augmenting long-term power and water supply-sources. Under this goal are programs for converting solid waste to energy and recycling wastewater.
  • Continuing and enhancing anti-corruption measures. This involves the approval of the Freedom of Information legislation and expediting the trials of public and private personalities indicted for corruption.
  • Reforming the judicial sector to be more efficient, objective and predictable. This includes restricting the abuse of TROs, limiting the basis for reconsiderations, and establishing a fast track legal process for business disputes.
  • Supporting environmental and socially responsible mining by enforcing the Mining Act for large-scale mining and regulating small-scale mining.
  • Upgrading airports and seaports to facilitate exports, imports, and tourism. This includes expediting the construction of a dedicated road that links Manila Port and NLEX-SLEX, and providing incentives to shipping lines that use Batangas and Subic seaports.

Membership and Benefits

There are 3 general categories for membership in the Chamber: regular, affiliate, and honorary. Of these, only regular members have voting rights at annual and special meetings and are eligible to hold elective and appointed office. Regular members are further divided into 3 categories: corporate members, which include domestic and foreign companies; major corporate members; and non-corporate members, or sole proprietors and professionals.

There are 4 classes of affiliate members: affiliate major corporate members; affiliate corporate members or companies and organizations in Canada or other countries except the Philippines; affiliate non-corporate members or sole proprietors and professionals residing in countries other than the Philippines; and affiliate student members, which include full-time students ages 28 or younger who are based in any country.

Members of the Chamber will receive a one-time market orientation and obtain information on local service providers, and can use CanCham’s in-house business center and participate in the Chamber’s trade missions, among other benefits.

For more information about the Canadian Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines, please visit http://cancham.com.ph/.

 

European Chamber of Commerce in the Philippines (ECCP) logo

European Chamber of Commerce in the Philippines (ECCP)

The European Chamber of Commerce in the Philippines or ECCP is an organization that is dedicated to promoting European interest in the Philippines and vice versa. It has a strong network composed of over 800 members. The ECCP provides members and clients alike with professional business services such as:

  • Client and Supplier Contact – Connect businesses with potential clients and suppliers in the Philippines or in the European market.
  • Distributor and Agent Database – Access to a database of potential business contacts relevant to the client’s business.
  • Partner Search – Match with a potential partner in the Philippines or in Europe.
  • Market Scanning – Provide information about the potential market for a particular product or service.

For more information about the ECCP and its services, visit http://www.eccp.com/.

 

Federation of Filipino-Chinese Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FFCCCII) logo

Federation of Filipino-Chinese Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FFCCCII)

The Federation of Filipino-Chinese Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FFCCCII) was established in 1954 with the goal to “devote time, talent and resources to projects that will contribute to the country’s economic, social cultural development.” Its name was chosen to mirror the impact of its members to the national economy.

Aside from serving as the representative of its members, the FFCCCII also takes part in activities that promote charity and humanity. This way, the Chamber shows that it is not only one of the leading organizations in the country, but it is also devoted to developing the nation’s civic, social, and cultural interests. Read more about FFCCCII’s activities on http://www.ffcccii.org/.

Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce Phils. Inc. (FICCI) logo

Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce Phils. Inc. (FICCI)

Another pioneer foreign chamber in the country, the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce Phils. Inc. or FICCI was established in 1951 with the goal of promoting the business and social interests of the Filipino-Indian Business Community in the Philippines. More than half a century later, the FICCI is still actively representing its members and voicing their interests and concerns. It holds a general membership meeting every 2 months and helps the community by conducting medical missions and relief work. Read more about the Chamber’s recent and upcoming events on http://www.ficci.com.ph/.

French Chamber of Commerce and Industry in the Philippines (CCI France-Philippines) logo

French Chamber of Commerce and Industry in the Philippines (CCI France-Philippines)

The French Chamber of Commerce and Industry in the Philippines or CCI France-Philippines was established in 1988 as a self-sustaining and non-profit organization that’s set on promoting bilateral business relationships between the 2 countries. It serves over 120 members and is a member of a worldwide network of French Chambers present in 85 countries. The CCI France-Philippines holds monthly cocktail events and sports tournaments, bringing together members and non-members to celebrate French culture and to strengthen business and networking relations.

The Chamber provides its clients with market studies, exhibition assistance, and partner search services. It also holds industry-specific trainings and workshops and trade missions. For more information about the CCI France-Philippines, visit http://www.ccifrance-philippines.org/.

German-Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry (GPCCI) logo

German-Philippine Chamber of

Commerce and Industry (GPCCI)

The German-Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry or GPCCI is the official representative of German companies in the Philippines. Established in 2008, the GPCCI engages in membership activities and offers companies services that can help them enter the Philippine market. Among these services are:

  • Market Entry – Assistance in finding a local sales or sourcing partner
  • Career and HR Services – Recruiting experienced and reliable employees
  • Trade Fair Services – Hosting events that will help companies find new contacts
  • Event Management Services – Developing event ideas for launching new products or businesses
  • Support Program – Holding business missions that promote German foreign trade

Read more about the services and programs offered by the GPCCI on http://philippinen.ahk.de/.

 

Italian Chamber of Commerce in the Philippines (ICCPI) logo

Italian Chamber of Commerce in the Philippines (ICCPI)

Established in 2011, the Italian Chamber of Commerce in the Philippines or ICCPI is a non-profit organization that aims to facilitate business relations between Italy and the Philippines. The ICCPI aims to identify and examine matters that affect the economy, industry, and commercial objectives of the 2 countries.

Aside from fostering business trades between Philippine and Italian companies, the Chamber also promotes culture and helps generate employment in the country. It offers a wide range of services, such as conducting sectoral and product market researches and offering company registration assistance, to those who want to set up business in the Philippines. The ICCPI also provides importer and distributor lists, hosts trade shows and exhibitions, and conducts trainings and workshops. For more information about the Italian Chamber of Commerce in the Philippines, visit https://iccpi.org.ph/.

 

Korean Chamber of Commerce Philippines (KCCP) logo

Korean Chamber of Commerce Philippines (KCCP)

The Korean Chamber of Commerce Philippines is the official representative of businesses that are connected to Korean corporations and individuals in the Philippines. Established in 1994, the KCCP has made it its mission to serve as the voice of Korean businesses in the Philippines and create a more investor-friendly climate in the country.

The Chamber offers 3 membership categories: Corporate, which is comprised of business organizations and enterprises in the Philippines that are owned by Korean Citizens; Associate, a level of membership that is open to corporations, partnerships, or individuals of any nationality, as long as they have business relations to Korean companies; and Special member, which is also awarded to individuals or businesses regardless of their nationality.

To join the KCCP or to find out more about its programs, visit http://www.kccp.ph/.

NordCham Philippines logo

NordCham Philippines

Formerly known as Nordic Business Council Philippines, NordCham Philippines was established in 2012 with the purpose of bringing together the members of the Nordic-Philippine business community. The organization promotes and fosters the business relationship between the Philippines and the Nordic (Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, Sweden) and Baltic (Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania) countries.

The Chamber currently has over 100 members, making it the largest Nordic Chamber of Commerce in Asia. It represents various companies, including SMEs, startups, and major multinational companies in a host of industries. In the last 3 years, the Chamber has done more than 30 consultation assignments for Nordic companies. Among the services it provides are market studies, trade matches, market visits, business development, and government relations. More information about these services are available on the NordCham website, http://nordcham.com.ph.

Philippine-Russian Business Assembly (PRBA) logo

Philippine-Russian Business Assembly (PRBA)

The Philippine-Russian Business Assembly or PRBA is comprised of over 100 companies from the Philippines and Russia and represents businesses from industries such as construction, energy, finance, green industries, mining, and tourism. Aside from its extensive network of members, the Chamber is also working in cooperation with local chambers from various cities and regions in the Philippines and in Russia.

Over the years, the PRBA has hosted a number of activities that are aimed to foster business and cultural relationships between the 2 countries. These events include the 2009 and 2010 Philippine-Russian Business Forum and Exhibition, business matching events, trade missions, exhibitions, the Russian Film Festival in the Philippines, a number of photo exhibits, and the Russian Sculpture Installation at the Cebu International Convention Center. See the details of these events on http://prbai.com/.

Philippines Norway Business Council (PNBC) logo

Philippines Norway Business Council (PNBC)

The Philippines Norway Business Council or PNBC was established in January 2011. The Chamber came to be due to the common initiative of the Norwegian business community in the Philippines. Its main purpose is to promote business between the Philippines and Norway. The Chamber fulfills its mission and promotes the interest of its members by:

  • Bringing up issues to the Royal Norwegian Embassy and acting as an advisory board to the Norwegian mission
  • Cooperating with appropriate bodies in the Philippines
  • Initiating discussions centered on issues that commonly affect business and trade
  • Promoting trade and commerce between the 2 countries
  • Providing information to companies in Norway that want to conduct business in the Philippines and vice versa
  • Representing Norwegian companies during official business events and Norway-Asia summits

More information about the Philippines Norway Business Council is available on its website, http://www.pnbc.ph/.

Philippine-Swiss Business Council (PSBC) logo

Philippine-Swiss Business Council (PSBC)

The Philippine-Swiss Business Council or PSBC was established in 2003 as a channel for initiating and sustaining activities that support the growth of trade between the Philippines and Switzerland. The Chamber’s existence is a direct result of a cooperative agreement between the Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PCCI) and the Swiss Southeast Asian Chamber of Commerce (SACC). The PSBC’s 54 members are from a mix of MNEs and SMEs that represent different industry sectors in the Philippines.

Membership to the PSBC is open to Philippine companies that are planning to or are currently engaged in business or trade with Switzerland. To know more about the membership requirements, visit http://psbc.aralmuna.me/ 

 

Spanish Chamber of Commerce (La Cámara) logo

Spanish Chamber of Commerce (La Cámara)

The Cámara Oficial Española de Comercio Industria y Navegación en Filipinas, Inc., also known as the Spanish Chamber of Commerce or La Cámara, is one of the pioneer chambers of commerce in the Philippines. It was established in 1899 to expand its members’ business opportunities and to continue to foster the economic bond between the Philippines and Spain. La Cámara has a wide local network and strong connection to the worldwide Spanish Chamber of Commerce. This, in turn, provides its members with opportunities for local and international business expansion.

La Cámara regularly conducts trade fair and product exhibitions, fellowship lunches, and other similar activities. To find out more about the Chamber’s current and upcoming events, visit http://www.lacamaramanila.com/.

The IT-BPM industry in the Philippines has certainly come a long way since the establishment of some of the first BPO companies in the country in the early 1990s. In just a few short decades, what is now known as the Sunshine Industry has become a major driving force in the Philippine economy and one of the top job generators and largest contributors to the country’s GDP.

In the face of many challenges, including the beginning of the age of artificial intelligence in the country, the future remains bright for the industry. The government and the local BPO organizations are consolidating efforts to ensure that the Filipino talent is future-ready; the IT-BPM industry is able to leverage rapid technological advancements and attain maximum sectoral growth; and the Philippines is able to retain its position as a preferred IT-BPM destination.

 

 

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