More manufacturing investmentsIn 2013, nothing stopped the Philippines from attaining its 7.2% gross domestic product (GDP). This year, analysts are equally positive about an upward GDP turn through the help of these sects: manufacturing, construction, and call center—the Philippines’ top growth drivers.
Businesses are even positive about an increase of as much as 8%, a possibility that isn’t far happening, considering that the Philippines is last year’s second fastest growing Asian economy after China. What led analysts to have this optimistic forecast is the rise in investments by three local industries.
The manufacturing segment of the industrial sector expanded by 12.3% in 2013, pushing the whole sector to grow by 9.5%. And this is only the beginning of the manufacturing segment’s upsurge in the next decade.
Local manufacturers thank foreign investments for this progress, particularly Japanese and Korean companies that have been setting up factories within Philippine shores. Philippine Export Zone Authority (PEZA) Director-General Lilia de Lima even expects more Japanese investments to pour in, as Japan is short on manpower, and many of its nuclear plants are still non-operating after the 2011 tsunami. Japan resolved its labor issues by sending work to China, but as Chinese relocation is becoming costlier as the years go by, the labor shift went to Southeast Asia. And fortunately for the Philippines, labor unrest in its neighbor countries made it a far better investment choice.
Continuous construction projects
The Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) claimed to be spending its budget on real infrastructure projects after clearing the department’s name from the ghost project allegations tagged with its development assistance program.The construction sector is also expecting a close to 10% annual growth after the government continuously increased the budget allocation for this sect and implemented legitimate public works projects.
In addition to the honest efforts, four multi-billion-peso construction projects by the Public Partnership Program (PPP) are underway, and even more constructions for call centers in the Philippines will commence in the next two years.
Aside from contributing to the country’s overall GDP growth, these projects promise employment to thousands of Filipino workers, especially in the provinces.
Outsourcing to outgrow foreign remittances
Opposing the Philippine peso’s depreciation, remittances from overseas Filipino workers (OFW) along with the earnings generated by the knowledge process outsourcing (KPO) and business process outsourcing (BPO) industries are bolstering the country’s foreign exchange reserves.
The outsourcing sector continues to expand every year. In the last half decade, BPO gradually branched out from an industry that dominantly offers voice service, to a sect with higher-value knowledge process services such as engineering, accounting, research, architecture, and medical transcription.At the rate this sector is growing, outsourcing will most likely overthrow OFW remittances as the Philippines’ main source of income.
At the end of the day, the anticipated GDP growth will only be achieved if the government spearheads economic campaigns and not entirely rely on industries such as manufacturing, construction, and call center. The Philippines may owe its robust financial performance to these three sects, but they wouldn’t have attained their growth driver status without the aid of various components of the business world.
Open Access BPO grew from a telemarketing startup to an all-around outsourcing firm that provides its clients voice and non-voice solutions including web development and rich media development.