LANDBANK brings low interest loans to the countryside
The Land Bank of the Philippines, with partner institutions, has aggressively utilized the total $570 million low interest funds provided by the World Bank and the US Agency for International Development (USAID) to provide accessible and affordable credit to micro, small and medium enterprises in the countryside.
Through the Countryside Loan Fund (CLF) and the Agricultural Loan Fund (ALF) Programs, LANDBANK has released P23.6 billion of the total funds made available as of end-June 2003.
"We are fully committed to supporting entrepreneurs in the countryside, particularly in the Visayas and Mindanao regions," LANDBANK President and CEO Gary B. Teves said.
Food and agro-processing cornered the largest share of availments at 27% or P6.2 billion. This was followed by service-oriented industries at 24% or P5.5 billion, and the agriculture-aquaculture sector at 19% share or P4.5 billion.
Manufacturing, product distribution, property development and tourism-related projects in the countryside also benefited from the ALF/CLF lending programs.
By region, Southern Tagalog (Region IV) received the biggest share of the ALF/CLF with 31%, followed by Central Luzon (Region III) with 19%, and Southern Mindanao (Region XI) with 12% share.
The ALF, established by the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas, amounts to a total of $120 million with the World Bank providing $100 million and USAID giving $20 million.
The CLF, on the other hand, has been divided into three programs with short, medium and long-term maturities. The World Bank has provided each of the three programs with $150 million for a total of $450 million in available funds.
In celebration of its 40th anniversary, LANDBANK recognized its Most Outstanding Countryside Partners in utilizing the ALF/CLF funds:
? Rural Bank of Sta. Catalina (Countryside Financial Institutions)
? Planters Development Bank (Thrift Banks)
? Equitable PCI Bank (Commercial Banks/GFIs)
? Equitable PCI Bank (Agri-Agra Financing)
? Bank of the Philippine Islands (SME/Micro Financing)
LANDBANK also cited Citibank N.A. as the Most Active Countryside Partner in Loan Syndication and Anchor Savings Bank as the Most Active Countryside Partner.
LANDBANK also gave special citations to its ALF/CLF sub-borrowers: flour milling firm Pilmico Foods Corp. (a borrower of Union Bank) and coconut oil refining firm JNJ Oil Industries (a borrower of Equitable PCI Bank).
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