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Aquino says no need to lobby against US bill targeting BPO operations

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President Benigno S. Aquino III said there is no need for the Philippines to lobby against an anti-outsourcing proposal in the US that may affect Philippine jobs considering it’s an election year in America.

“I am made to understand that this was an issue that was brought up during the last elections in America. And from that time, which is four years ago, up to now, the situation hasn’t changed. Perhaps, there isn’t that much of a need yet,” the President said in response to a question about the US bill.

Palace reporters interviewed the President in Pasay City following the inauguration of an expanded site of a New York-based outsourcing company operation in the Philippines.

The President said he’s considering the election season in the US and it is not surprising that American politicians would resurrect such proposals to gain public support.

“We have to take into account that this is an election year, perhaps those are election-related statements. At the end of the day, like any other country, America would want to make their companies more effective, competitive . . . and if outsourcing is one of the keys towards that, then I would presume it will continue. Well, hopefully it will not change because it is one of our sunrise industries,” he said.

Under US House Bill 3596 otherwise known as the Call Center and Consumers Protection bill, call center operators will be required to identify their location, giving US callers the option of choosing a US-based operator.

The bill also seeks to punish companies that will employ call center agents located in other countries by making them ineligible for grants and guaranteed loans from the federal government.

US call centers that would fail to report its relocation to an offshore location to the Labor Department within 60 days will be penalized.

By PCOO/PIA9-ZBST




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