German business software vendor SAP AG plans to increase the number of software engineers in its Indian operations to 1,500 from 1,000 by the end of this year.

“As we said earlier this year, we will be increasing the number of software engineers in low-cost labor regions, such as India and China,” said SAP spokesman Markus Berner, confirming numbers given by the company’s Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Henning Kagermann in an interviewed published Wednesday in the German newspaper Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung.

In January, Kagermann said that in addition to plans to sell more software in the Chinese and Indian markets, SAP aims to take advantage of hiring less costly software developers in these regions. Chinese and Indian developers, he said, are as good as those in Europe and the U.S. but cost four to five times less.

This year SAP intends to hire 1,500 new employees, according to Berner. While 500 of these new jobs will be in India, the others will be in the company’s research and development, and sales operations, he said.

Currently, SAP is in the process of consolidating various administrative processes of its assorted European units and transferring these to one central unit, Berner said. “This is all part of our shared-service concept, which we have already implemented in Asia,” he said.