The information technology-business process management (IT-BPM) industry has relayed to the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) their call for flexibility in granting incentives for those implementing work-from-home (WFH).
BSP governor Felipe Medalla said at the Philippine Economic Forum in Singapore on Wednesday the industry noted the flexibility will enable them to grow by 12 percent.
“We are very optimistic about BPO (business process outsourcing. They were telling me that if we are a bit more flexible on tax incentives to apply to WFH… because the way the laws are written if you are not in a zone, you don’t get the ITH (income tax holiday)…
So if you can do that (flexibility) , they were saying, `we can easily grow at 12 percent,’” Medalla said
He added the BPO industry is one advantage the Philippines has.
Meanwhile, the Philippine Economic Zone Authority (PEZA) yesterday said its 30 percent WFH policy is a permissible activity under the PEZA law, Telecommuting Act and the Corporate Recovery and Tax Incentives for Enterprises (CREATE) Act.
“We have been implementing this policy since 2017 that benefited our locators with marked increase in productivity as they engaged in WFH especially during the pandemic. As this PEZA WFH policy preceded the Telecommuting and CREATE laws, it is covered by the sunset provision of the CREATE,” said Tereso Panga, PEZA director-general in a social media post yesterday.
Panga said as most information technology (IT) locators are 100-percent for export and meet the minimum 70 percent export threshold and minimum 70 percent work on site, they should be entitled to full incentives even if they do 30 percent WFH.
“This PEZA policy is consistent with the direction of some legislators favoring a greater WFH/flexiwork arrangement (i.e., more than the current 30% limit set by PEZA) for ecozone IT locators so they can keep their incentives as they operate in the IT centers. As the enactment of the proposed bill will take some time, we are pushing for the extension of 30 percent WFH limit until March 2023 as an established business flexibility measure of PEZA,” he said.