Local residents of the so-called “Next Wave Cities” are in for more job and economic opportunities, according to a Department of Science and Technology (DOST) official. In an interview with DZRH’s Radyo Henyo recently, Monchito Ibrahim, deputy executive director of DOST’s Information and Communication Technology Office, explained that a “next wave city” will not only serve as a location for an Information Technology-Business Process Management office. The city will also provide locals with employment, business, and livelihood opportunities right in their area as IT-BPM companies locate in their places.
In a joint study by the DOST-ICTO and the Information Technology and Business Process Association of the Philippines (IBPAP), “Next Wave Cities” were identified as the best current or potential information technology and business process management (IT-BPM) host cities based on talent resources, infrastructure cost, business environment and risk management – the three most important considerations in locating an IT-BPM office.
The establishment of “Next Wave Cities” is one way of pushing for a more robust ICT climate in areas beyond Metro Manila to generate more employment and business opportunities in the countryside.
DOST-ICTO and IBPAP identified in the 2012 Top 10 Next Wave Cities in the country, namely Davao, Dumaguete, Iloilo, Lipa, Metro Bulacan, Metro Cavite, Metro Laguna, Metro Naga and Metro Rizal.
Ibrahim cited the fresh college graduates from the provinces to stress the idea behind the program. “We are bringing the jobs to them, right in their area so they don’t have to go to Metro Manila to get decent employment,” Ibrahim pointed out.
Ibrahim also believes that by promoting and convincing industry investors to put their business within their areas, an appropriate eco-system for local residents is also put in place for them to cultivate and develop their own ICT industry.
“Aside from employment, we are also giving opportunities to young graduates and professionals to get into business or what we call IT entrepreneurship,” Ibrahim said.
Meanwhile, DOST-ICTO and IBPAP continue to identify alternate locations that could be suitable destinations for IT-BPM operations.
At the end of 2012, the IT-BPM industry generated revenues of U$ 13.3 billion and provided more than 717,000 jobs in all parts of the country.
Ibrahim also revealed that a few months from now, they will be holding several regional road shows to promote the initiatives of Next Wave Cities as well as to market other IT-BPM services aside from call centers, such as healthcare outsourcing and gaming development, to countryside folks.
Monchito Ibrahim, deputy executive director of the Department of Science and Technology-Information and Communications Technology Office (DOST-ICTO), discusses the idea behind Next Wave Cities Program during its press briefing last May 20, 2013 at Manila Peninsula Hotel, Makati City. According to him, this program helps investors assess which other cities outside Metro Manila can be the most viable venue for their IT-BPM operations. He also added that through this initiative, graduates who reside in provinces have the opportunities to get jobs and earn money without moving from their respective areas. (Text by Allan Mauro V. Marfal / Photo by: Gerardo Palad, S&T Media Service, DOST-STII)