October 31, 2021

BPO is still a vital approach for reviving the real estate industry.

Colliers Philippines head for Office Services Dom Frederick Andaya said on Friday that the business process outsourcing (BPO) industry is likely to help the property market rebound as it did during the global financial crisis of 2008.

Andaya stated in a market briefing that the BPO sector will have considerable demand for office space now that the US economy has begun to open up.

“Right now, outsourcing as a method to recover and rebuild will be significant moving forward,” he said, referring to what transpired during the global financial crisis.

Financial services, banking, insurance, and high-level work such as software development and game development, among other areas, are predicted to rise by 8% in terms of revenue and full-time personnel, according to him.

BPOs, according to Andaya, will contribute to the absorption of available office space in Metro Manila, which currently stands at 1.78 million square meters or 60 unoccupied buildings with a leasable size of 30,000 square meters each.

Andaya noted that the 1.78 million sqm of vacant office space will be absorbed in around 3.5 years.

BPO firms are looking for office space in provinces like Cebu, Pampanga, Iloilo, Bacolod, and Davao, in addition to Metro Manila.

The adoption of a hybrid work model, which combines on-site and work-from-home work arrangements, as well as the availability of IT parks and buildings registered with the Philippine Economic Zone Authority (PEZA), according to the property market expert, could affect companies’ investment strategies, particularly BPO firms.

“Some of them are studying, but here are some of the questions: Are PEZA-registered businesses able to switch from other investment promotion agencies such as the BOI (Board of Investments), which does not require businesses to operate in specified places, allowing them to apply their hybrid work model strategy?” Andaya asked.

BPOs can enjoy the same benefits under the CREATE Law whether they register with PEZA or BOI, according to Trade Secretary and BOI chair Ramon Lopez in a text message.

Companies registering with PEZA must locate within PEZA-registered IT parks, buildings, or industrial zones, but companies filing with BOI can register anywhere.

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