To attract jobs related to Information and Technology enabled services, Bhutan Industry Association for Business Process Outsourcing (BIABPO) was launched in Thimphu TechPark yesterday.

Business Process Outsourcing is a method of subcontracting various office operations to third party vendors.

Executive director of BIABPO, Kesang, said that 21 founding members were mobilised as of January 28 for the industry association.

The association’s interim president Graham Gulliver said the BIABPO was established to function as the voice and coordinating body in support of the BPO stakeholders. “It aims to expand the BPO industry to explore new and sustainable jobs and empower the economy by bringing more wealth to the nation. These aims are to be achieved through creating a substantial new services export industry.”

It would improve social stability and aid in decentralising employment opportunities, he said.

“Some of the key strengths include the availability of English speaking talent and a stable political environment. Bhutan truly has all of the necessary elements to succeed as a competitor with other countries in the BPO sector.”

The availability of reliable and clean energy and country’s GNH model are further attractions to foreign locators and BPOs to employ young people, he said.

At the inaugural, labour minister Ugyen Dorji, said the government had to create 67,000 jobs within five years. “There is something called employment responsibility system which the ministry is in the process of establishing. We will work with nine sectors and one of them is IT.”

He said it was a relief when youth didn’t have to go abroad for jobs. “BPO alone is going to create about 3,000 jobs.”

The association, aims to market young talent and brand Bhutan in the industry to facilitate entry by foreign BPOs and companies seeking to have direct presence of their own.

Graham Gulliver said the association would bring more credibility while competing among other countries in the same market in developed countries and to advocate internationally competitive government policies and ease of doing business.

BIABPO has four programmes, which include talent development, investor due diligence, offshore readiness programme, and offshore implementation programmes to support their mission to expand the industry.

Rinchen Zangmo