Tue | Aug 22, 2017

PM expects more BPO investors

Published:Saturday | December 10, 2016 | 12:00 AMOkoye Henry

Western Bureau:

Prime Minister Andrew Holness has said he is expecting to see expansive growth in the business processing outsourcing (BPO) sector and, as a consequence, the Government will be seeking to create more space to accommodate investors expected in the coming year.

According to Holness, more than 45 companies are currently operating in the sector and an additional seven companies are expected in 2017.

"I have given a directive to the Factories Corporation of Jamaica and to JAMPRO that they must work together to form and invest funds to build out in advance, and in anticipation of, and to use as a marketing tool, the infrastructure," the prime minister said at the opening of the two-day 2016 Edu-TVET conference in Montego Bay on Thursday.

"It is, indeed, a critical sector in the plan for inclusive economic growth and job creation," continued Holness, in alluding to the Government's plan to see the BPO sector, which now employs approximately 22,000 persons, expanding to 30,000 in the next five years.

 

Opportunities for local investors

 

Holness also used the opportunity to urge more local investors to get involved in the sector, noting that it has great potential and untapped opportunities for those who are prepared to take some risks.

"The development that happened in the industry has really been driven by investors coming here to say 'I am interested; let's see what we can do'," said Holness. "So, if we really are interested in expanding and really grabbing this opportunity, we are going to have to take some risks.

"This is what business is about, and the role of the Government is to facilitate and be the market maker," the prime minister said.

With the expectations of the BPO industry's continued expansion, not just in Montego Bay, but across the island, the prime minister said the education sector will be called upon to churn out an even better trained and qualified workforce.