IT sector aiming to overtake Philippines for third place in services exports

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Mexico is looking to climb up a place and overtake the Philippines for third place in IT services exports in 2012, local paper Reforma reported.

To accomplish this, Mexico's IT sector is intensifying its efforts to train and certify the local workforce, and has managed to secure more bank financing to boost business growth, Marco Mejía , coordinator of the economy ministry's software industry development program, Prosoft, was quoted as saying.

Mexico's IT market value reached US$17bn in 2010, with almost US$3.7bn from services exports - behind India, China and the Philippines.

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"We are working closely with the economy ministry, the software council and the government of Nuevo León [state] to develop a viable alternative for commercial banks to finance this industry of little assets, which currently is not viable according to credit parameters," Mejía said.

Many IT companies are unable to access credit from financial institutions, since the latter are overall unaware of how the industry works, according to the official, and the funding is not used to buy tangible assets like machinery, but to pay salaries to develop product such as software or prototype hardware.

The economy ministry and Prosoft are supporting training and certification efforts through the Mexico First project, together with companies like Cisco, SAP and Microsoft. The initiative provides financial support to train and certify 150,000 people by 2013 in software development, software architecture, English and project management.