Sri Lanka woos Indian BPO cos

Sri Lanka woos Indian BPO cos

By SiliconIndia   |   Tuesday, 02 November 2004, 08:00 Hrs
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BANGALORE: this year has a first time participant in Board of Investment (BOI), Sri Lanka, at the IT Nations pavilion. The island country is trying to attract Indian BPO companies interested in having a disaster recovery center there.

Indian BPO firms, namely, WNS, Office Tiger, HSBC and Astron- a UK based BPO company have started call center and transaction processing operations on a small scale in the last one year in Sri Lanka. Companies like Connoiseur Electronics and Numeric Power Systems have small assembly units in the country.

"We have around 3000-4000 people employed in the BPO industry in Sri Lanka," said C Ignatius, senior manager (Promotion), BOI, Sri Lanka. He added that Colombo is a good destination for voice and transaction processing.

He added that the government was encouraging the services sector including shipping, tourism and BPO. "Unlike India, we don't have any big industry. A major chunk of our exports ($three billion out of total $four billion) exports is from the garment industry." The Sri Lankan government is creating a human resources pool by pushing for IT literacy across the country. Every year, the country produces around 14,000 graduates.

"Sri Lanka's plus points include proximity to India, a good site for disaster recovery, availability of a good pool of graduates, cost advantage of around 10-15 percent and good telecom infrastructure," Ignatius said.

On the issue of how participation in would help the BOI, he said " We have already participated at the London Outsource World. Here, it is more cost-effective and in addition, we could target both Indian and international companies in one place." The BOI has already received enquiries from Bangalore based software companies that are interested in providing software and customization assistance to the garment industries in Sri Lanka.

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