Escudero urges BPOs to set up shop in Mindanao to bring in jobs

Senatorial candidate and Sorsogon Governor Chiz Ezcudero urged business process outsourcing (BPO) companies to consider setting up more offices in Mindanao to boost employment in the region.

The former senator noted that the BPO industry was the most resilient during the pandemic, creating 23,000 new jobs in 2020 while other businesses laid off workers or shut down entirely.

“BPOs have shown that they are nearly crisis-proof, which means they are the best sources of employment. Perhaps we can give them incentives to bring their businesses to Mindanao and provide more jobs there,” he said.

As of January 2022, 6.4 percent of the Philippines’ working-age population were unemployed, translating to 2.93 million jobless Filipinos, according to the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA).

The Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao registered the lowest labor force participation rate (LFPR) at 55.6 percent, meaning at least one in two people were unemployed.

Zamboanga Peninsula and Davao regions were not far behind with 60 percent and 59.5 percent LFPR, respectively. The poorest provinces are also in Mindanao.

“We recognize the valuable contribution of BPOs to the country’s economy, but like all other industries, their presence is concentrated in Luzon. If we can extend the employment opportunities to Mindanao then we can make economic recovery more inclusive,” Escudero said.

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