India Inc. favors strong PR campaign on outsourcing

Friday, 20 June 2003, 07:00 Hrs
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NEW DELHI: Indian industry feels the need of a strong campaign in the West to highlight the importance of outsourcing of jobs to India by global companies, a survey report said Thursday.

According to the survey conducted by the Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry of India (Assocham), a vast majority of the respondents favor a public relations exercise in the U.S. and Europe on the benefits of outsourcing.

"There should be a communication campaign through the American media highlighting the value Indian BPO (business process outsourcing) industry is adding to the American society, polity and economy," said the survey.

"To achieve this, a mass information campaign on outsourcing can be carried out in the U.S. and European countries," it added.

Four American states -- New Jersey, Maryland, Connecticut and Washington - are reportedly proposing to ban outsourcing of government contracts to companies outside the U.S.

The move has spread disquiet among the Indian BPO companies, which earn millions of dollars by providing back-end services to global corporations like GE, British Airways, British Telecom, American Express and Citibank.

India's rapidly growing BPO industry has virtually turned the country into an electronic housekeeper to the world.

"There is a need to put together a cogent case outlining how the American states considering the bill against outsourcing to India stand to lose in a net lose-lose proposition," said the Assocham survey.

"The business case needs to be put together on how much will the states lose in additional costs per call that are taken in the U.S. or Britain versus taken in an off-shore destination like India."

The industry lobby group urged the government to make case under the World Trade Organisation agreements that the bills against outsourcing would act as trade barriers and not allow a fair movement of services.

"Outsourcing of activities to a cost-effective, more-productive location like India contributes to the overall development of U.S. and European countries," said the report.

"This reasoning is based on a chain-process according to which outsourcing will lead to greater workforce productivity thereby a higher economic growth."

Source: IANS
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