Representatives from one of Australia’s ‘big four’ banks, the Australia and New Zealand Banking Group Ltd (ANZ-BGL) met with Philippines President Benigno Aquino recently, making a commitment to ‘support, develop and expand the Australia-New Zealand business community in the Philippines’.

In the immediate future, this involves expanding ANZ-BGL’s Philippines call center operation, which currently employs 400 Filipinos. Expansion could see another center opened and staff increased to 2000. ANZ-BGL’s CEO Michael Smith also met with Philippines Finance Secretary Cesar Purisima and Trade Undersecretary Zenaida Maglaya.

There have been other rumblings lately of a desire to develop the Philippines as a regional financial services hub. Multinational Johnson & Johnson just opened a Global Financial Services Center (GFS) at its headquarters in Parañaque City. According to Vice President and Finance and CFO Dominic Caruso, the center would “provide high-quality and cost-effective transactional processing and financial reporting services under global governance, executed at a global, regional, and country level as required.” He also praised the level of training and work ethic of the local workforce.

sources & articles: Yahoo! Philippines,