The prolonged US-China trade war has had little or no impact on the Philippine business process outsourcing (BPO) sector with the industry‘s low costs and English-language abilities continuing to attract investors, according to the Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group (MUFG), the Tokyo-headquartered banking group. Leong Sook Mei, the MUFG’s ASEAN head of global markets research, said the country’s English-speaking population gives it a huge advantage, with many US firms expected to continue to outsource their activities to the country.
Echoing these sentiments, Marie Diana Lynn C. Singson, head of global corporate banking at MUFG Manila, said the low cost of setting up a business in the Philippines continues to be a powerful draw for investors, with companies still looking to establish BPO operations in the country as a means of cutting costs despite the ongoing trade tensions. Overall, data recently released by the Information Technology and Business Process Association of the Philippines (IBPAP) shows that the country’s BPO industry continued to perform well in 2018, with earnings said to be in the region of US$24.5bn-24.8bn, despite this being slightly below the Association’s initial forecast for the year. Striking something of a warning note, the IBPAP also noted that the country’s tax reform and incentives rationalization programme could adversely affect the industry and prevent it from achieving its 2022 revenue target of US$40bn.