The Philippines is losing $45 billion and throwing away job opportunities for an additional 1.04 billion employees in the business process outsourcing (BPO) industry because of its slow internet connection.
This was revealed by presidential bet Augusto “Boboy” L. Syjuco Jr. who said that the country has one of the worst internet connections in the world. As a result, we are losing billions and BPO companies that are disappointed with the slow internet speed are closing shop and bringing their business elsewhere.
Syjuco, the former representative of the 2nd District of Iloilo and director general of Technical Education and Skills Development Authority or TESDA, said this is a crying shame since the Philippines is the No. 1 BPO internet services provider in the world. Ironically, it has one of the slowest broadband speeds in Asia at 3.64 megabits per second (Mbps).
His words are not mere conjecture. A study on consumer internet speeds made in May 2015 showed that among 22 Asian countries, the Philippines ranks 21st for having the second slowest average download speed.
After measuring the internet speeds of households in Asia, internet metrics provider Ookla discovered that the Philippines has an average speed of 3.64 Mbps. The Top 5 countries with fast internet speeds are Singapore (122.43 Mbps), Hong Kong (102.96 Mbps), Japan (82.12 Mbps), South Korea (59.77 Mbps), and Macau (50.66 Mbps). Worldwide, the average broadband download speed is 23.3 Mbps which is about eight times faster than the Philippines.
Despite the slow download speed, the Philippines has one of the most expensive internet connections in the world. Oookla said Filipinos spend $18.19 per Mbps, compared to an average of $5.21 per Mbps worldwide.
Syjuco vowed to fix this if he wins the presidential race. One of his immediate priorities is to improve the country’s internet speed and make it comparable to Singapore. By doing so, he said he can attract investors, generate more income for the country, and create more jobs for Filipinos. Judging by his qualifications, Syjuco appears to be one of the most promising candidates in the May 2016 presidential elections.