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This photo taken on Jan. 29, 2019 shows a general view of the skyline of Manila.
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POGOs seen dominating Philippine office demand by year-end — Leechiu

(Philstar.com) - July 10, 2019 - 6:24pm

MANILA, Philippines — Philippine Offshore Gaming Operators, or POGOS, are expected to be the largest consumer of office space in Metro Manila and overtake the IT-BPM industry in terms of office demand, global real estate services firm Leechiu Property Consultants reported Wednesday.

At a press conference, LPC CEO David Leechiu said that while the IT-BPM sector still dominates office demand in Metro Manila in the first half with 244,000 sqm., office take-up by the POGO industry — which was recorded at 242,000 sqm. in the first six months — is forecast to be the biggest demand driver by year-end.

Leechiu said POGO’s faster site selection process and the effect of the recent government moratorium on opening new ecozones in Metro Manila will stimulate the industry’s appetite for office spaces.

President Rodrigo Duterte recently signed Administrative Order 18 calling for inter-agency efforts to strengthen ecozones in the countryside and putting a moratorium on the processing of applications for ecozones in Metro Manila by the Philippine Economic Zone Authority, or PEZA.

But the same LPC report noted that approval of PEZA spaces outside of Metro Manila has been slow.

“The latest LPC report noted that since 2016, offshore gaming has been the fastest growing industry in the Philippine office market – taking up substantial space in Bay City, Makati City, and Alabang,” LPC said in a press release.

“It further noted that outside Metro Manila, POGOs have also expanded to Laguna taking up 46,000 sqm. of office space; Cebu City, 37,000 sqm.; Clark in Pampanga, 34,000 sqm.; and Cavite, 13,000 sqm.,” it added.

“It will continue to take up space in other cities with the completion of a range of infrastructure projects.”

Leasing demand for residential condominium units occupied mostly by POGO workers in Metro Manila has also soared, LPC also said, with rental rates increasing of up to 80% from three years ago in the Bay area. — Ian Nicolas Cigaral

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