of joblessness in the US have forced several states to introduce legislation
seeking to prevent BPO (business processes outsourcing) jobs being farmed out to
companies in other countries. India being a major beneficiary of this system has
reasons to worry.
to BPO has grown over the last few months as the slowdown in US economy has
turned out to be more enduring than was expected. American jobs sourced out to
India means fewer jobs for American citizens.
earns nearly $ 1.5 billion dollars every year from these jobs and employs
150,000 people in the sector that runs 400 call centres and produces
high-quality software. India still remains the main choice for US companies
mainly because of considerably lower wages and good quality of work. Much of the
quality comes from excellent grasp of English language Indian youngsters working
in these countries have got.
Indians as a whole are known to be better at English language than people from
first organised opposition to BPO jobs farmed out to India came from New Jersey
where a bill was introduced in the state Senate seeking to bar such jobs from
going abroad. It demanded that at least government contracts funded by US tax
payers’ money should not go to places like India while US citizens themselves
were losing jobs everyday.
are chances of such resistance spreading to private US companies as well.
Already across the Atlantic the major British trade unions have come together to
thwart outsourcing as they expect joblessness to grow because of it.
his US visit in mid-June India’s commerce minister Arun Jaitley raised the
issue with US Trade Representative Robert Zoellick and other administration
leaders. Jaitley later said there was no immediate threat to India’s BPO
market as US industrialists themselves had been lobbying to protect it. US
companies save $ 20,000 per year on every employee by farming out such jobs to
However, we have not heard the last on it as the states of Missouri, Connecticut, Washington and Maryland have prepared bills like New Jersey’s opposing jobs getting farmed out to cheap-labour countries.g
See related story: Growing Paranoia