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FLOW, Digicel and BPIAJ to meet government today…Muppuri’s letter to Wheatley high on the agenda

Published:Friday | September 16, 2016 | 9:00 AMMark Titus

Western Bureau:

The top leadership of telecoms giants FLOW and Digicel and the executive members of the Business Process Industry Association of Jamaica (BPIAJ) are slated to meet the Government today to address concerns recently raised by the BPIAJ, the umbrella organisation for the lucrative business process outsourcing (BPO) sector.

"I can't tell you much at this time, but yes, I can confirm that a meeting has been called with the parties you have mentioned," a BPIAJ source told The Gleaner on condition of anonymity yesterday. "The meeting is definitely on."

The meeting has been called against the background of concerns expressed in a recent letter from BPIAJ president Dr Guna Muppuri to Science and Technology Minister Dr Andrew Wheatley about inconsistencies and little or no accountability from the two providers in the services being provided to the BPO sector. The letter was also copied to Daryl Vaz, minister without portfolio in the Office of the Prime Minister.

NO SUPPORT

In his letter to Wheatley, Muppuri stated that despite an acknowledgment that the BPO was a critical part of the Government's economic plan, the sector was not getting the requisite support from the two telecommunications giants - FLOW and Digicel.

"Despite the liberalisation of the telecoms sector, Jamaica's telecoms cost remains one of the highest among countries in Latin America and the Caribbean region - more than 40 per cent more than its competing counterparts," stated Muppuri in his letter to the science and technology minister. "A robust and reliable telecoms infrastructure is critical to the growth and expansion of the BPO industry."