The Land Bank of the Philippines is taking steps to make its direct lending programs more accessible and affordable for small farmers and fishers (SFFs), in line with its aggressive drive to intensify support to the sector.
“We understand that applying for loans can be intimidating, especially for small farmers and fishers, so we have started making basic improvements in our processes to make it easier for them to avail of loans,” said LANDBANK President and CEO Cecilia C. Borromeo.
Among the basic enhancements which the Bank made is the simplification of the loan application form, which has been condensed into one document – from what used to be three separate documents (i.e. Application Form, Sworn Statement/Attestation, and Data Privacy Consent). Completing the form is also now more straightforward with mostly tick boxes, to make it easier for farmers and fishers. The promissory note which used to be a 14-page document has also been simplified and shortened to one page.
Basic documentary requirements have likewise been trimmed down. SFF borrowers of the Agricultural Competitiveness Enhancement Fund (ACEF) Lending Program, for instance, will only need to submit a loan application form, a simple farm plan, and barangay clearance.
The Bank also made its programs more affordable by standardizing the interest rates at 5% per annum for most direct lending programs for SFFs. These include the Accessible Funds for Delivery to Agrarian Reform Beneficiaries (AFFORD-ARBs) Program, which provides loans to finance production of rice, corn, and high-value crops, as well as the acquisition of small farm implements.
Retail lending programs for SFFs that the Bank administers for the Department of Agriculture also now have interest rates fixed at 2% p.a. These include the ACEF Lending Program and the Socialized Credit Program under the Sugarcane Industry Development Act (SCP-SIDA) funded by the Sugar Regulatory Administration.
Also available at an interest rate of 2% p.a. is the Expanded Rice Credit Assistance under the Rice Competitiveness Enhancement Fund (ERCA-RCEF). Under the Program, LANDBANK will lend up to P500 million annually for the next six years to rice farmers registered in the Registry System on Basic Sectors in Agriculture or RSBSA, and to DA-accredited cooperatives. For on-lending by cooperatives under ERCA-RCEF, interest rate is at 0% p.a., as long as effective pass-on rate to end borrowers is not higher than 6% p.a.
Processing of loan applications is also quicker – with average turn-around time of just one day as against the maximum 10-days commitment to the Governance Commission for GOCCs. This is provided that the borrower submitted complete documents and credit/background investigation is favourable.
“This is just the beginning as we are actively looking for ways to further improve the loan application process for our farmer and fisher borrowers. Through these efforts, we hope to encourage them to go to LANDBANK instead of borrowing from informal lenders who charge significantly higher rates,” Borromeo added.
LANDBANK cash grant payouts reach P89-B as of September
In partnership with the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), the Land Bank of the Philippines (LANDBANK) continues to deliver timely financial assistance as it released P89.45 billion in cash grants that benefitted 6.3 million lowincome families as of the first nine months of 2021. Of the total releases, P82.72 billion in cash grants were distributed to 4.4 million beneficiaries under the government’s Conditional Cash Transfer (CCT) Program, intended to support poor households with children aged 18 years old and below. The remaining P6.73 billion was released to 1.9 million beneficiaries under the DSWD’s Unconditional Cash Transfer (UCT) Program, as part of support interventions in line with the implementation of the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion (TRAIN) Law. “LANDBANK remains one with the National Government in the immediate delivery of social protection interventions and much-needed financial relief to vulnerable sectors. Under the whole-of-nation approach, we work closely with the DSWD and other government partners at the forefront of extending responsive and impactful services,” said LANDBANK President and CEO Cecilia C. Borromeo. The Bank also continues to distribute LANDBANK cash cards to CCT and UCT beneficiaries to make receiving and accessing benefits easier and more convenient. The cards can be used for cash withdrawals at LANDBANK ATMs and Agent Banking Partners, and for cashless purchases in groceries and drugstores, among others. As of 30 September 2021, LANDBANK has produced 6.4 million cash cards for this ongoing partnership, of which 4.4 million cards are already being utilized by the beneficiaries. CCT and UCT beneficiaries may also receive their benefits via over-thecounter transactions at LANDBANK branches and through various conduits. LANDBANK is relentless in fulfilling its expanded mandate as the delivery arm for the National Government’s social protection initiatives, in line with serving the Filipino people and the nation at large.LEARN MORE
Retail Treasury Bonds purchase made accessible via LANDBANK app
The Land Bank of the Philippines (LANDBANK) has made investing in the Bureau of the Treasury’s (BTr) 26th tranche of Retail Treasury Bonds (RTB-26) more accessible with the LANDBANK Mobile Banking App (MBA). The RTB-26 is a five-and-a-half-year bond with a coupon rate of 4.625% per annum designed for retail investors as a low-risk and higher-yielding savings instrument. Proceeds of the offer that is expected to reach P30 billion will support the National Government’s ongoing pandemic response initiatives and priority projects, among others. Through the LANDBANK MBA, interested investors can purchase RTB-26 for as low as P5,000 and in multiples of P5,000 thereafter in as fast as five minutes. This feature is also available in the Mobile Banking App of the Overseas Filipino Bank (OFBank), the official digital bank of the Philippine government and a subsidiary of LANDBANK. “We are once again inviting the investing public to support the BTr’s latest Retail Treasury Bond offer now made more convenient through LANDBANK’s digital platforms. Investors can purchase this affordable and low-risk investment in five minutes, and at the same time contribute directly to advancing the country’s ongoing economic recovery,” said LANDBANK President and CEO Cecilia C. Borromeo. Investors can also make online placements for RTB-26 through the BTr’s Online Ordering Platform then settle their payments via the LANDBANK Link.BizPortal. Over-the-counter placements are also accepted in all LANDBANK branches nationwide. The offer period for RTB-26 is until 26 November 2021, which includes a bond exchange offer where holders of Fixed-Rate Treasury Notes (FXTNs) 10-54 and 5-74 can swap their holdings for the new bond offering. The RTB-26 follows the RTB-25 issuance last March which raised P463.32 billion, of which LANDBANK generated 27% or a total of P124.39 billion. It also immediately comes after the highly successful first onshore retail dollar bond (RDB) issue in September that raised $1.6 billion for the national government, of which LANDBANK contributed US$205.27 million of total sales. LANDBANK serves as the Joint Lead Issue Manager for the RTB-26 offering, in line with promoting greater financial inclusion and inclusive national development.LEARN MORE
LANDBANK, Abra town sign P60-M loan for dev’t projects
Lagayan Mayor Edmarc L. Crisologo (2nd from left) and LANDBANK Ilocos Sur Lending Center Head Loida Arlene Ringor (3rd from left) lead the signing of a P60-million loan to finance various infrastructure projects for the Municipality. They are joined by Vice Mayor Apolinar Molina, Sr. (4th from left), Municipal Treasurer Jesus B. Dalangin (rightmost), and LANDBANK Account Officer Richard A. Refuerzo (leftmost). LAGAYAN, Abra – The Land Bank of the Philippines (LANDBANK) and the Municipal Government of Lagayan in Abra province recently signed a P60-million loan to finance development projects to boost the local economy. Facilitated by the LANDBANK Ilocos Sur Lending Center, the 15-year term loan will finance the rehabilitation of a municipal road between barangays Pulot and Poblacion, to significantly improve the movement of goods and the public within the municipality. The road serves as the main route linking all four of Lagayan’s barangays and connects the town to other adjacent municipalities. The municipal road is seen to benefit Lagayan’s 4,617 residents, including 850 farmers and 625 fishers, and allows them to travel more safely and efficiently, especially when transporting agricultural goods to markets in nearby municipalities. The road will also support increased tourism activity within the municipality. Local tourist attractions in Lagayan include the caves in Mount Gaco, Lusuac Sprint Resort, and whitewater tubing or bamboo rafting near Ar-Arbis Falls. The P60-million LANDBANK term loan will also cover the purchase of a payloader to be used mainly in dredging the Palsuguan and Tineg rivers traversing Lagayan. This is part of the LGU’s efforts to prevent floods in rice fields and barangays caused by the natural build-up of debris and rising waters resulting from monsoon rains. To further control seasonal flooding, the LGU will also use part of the LANDBANK loan to put up a drainage canal system in Barangay Poblacion to improve water drainage for the health and safety of residents. “LANDBANK remains a ready and able partner of LGUs nationwide for various recovery and development initiatives. We will continue to serve local communities to spur economic activity, growth, and recovery,” said LANDBANK President and CEO Cecilia C. Borromeo. Lagayan Mayor Edmarc L. Crisologo expressed his appreciation for LANDBANK’s financial support, which will also bankroll the construction of a Legislative Building and the rehabilitation of the municipality’s Evacuation Center to be able to accommodate more evacuees, especially during disasters. The Center will also serve as the operations hub for the Municipal Disaster Risk Reduction Management (MDRRM). “May we continue and strengthen our partnership towards the success of every Lagayano’s dream. On behalf of my constituents, I am in deep gratitude for the helping hand extended by LANDBANK and the realization of the vision, dreams, and aspirations that Lagayanos have been longing for a long time now,” said Mayor Crisologo. As of end-October 2021, LANDBANK has extended P62.06 billion in outstanding loans to LGUs nationwide. Of this amount, P22.96 billion financed various agri-aqua projects, including P5.82 billion and P5.23 billion for transportation and health-care initiatives, respectively.LEARN MORE