Landbank's loan window prioritizes Davao's small farmers, fishers

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Tuesday, December 7, 2010

SOME 30,769 newly-assisted farmers and fishermen belonging to small cooperatives in Davao Region are among the priority sectors who will benefit from the loan window of the Land Bank of the Philippines, pegged at P7.08 billion as of October this year.

Camilo Leyba, LBP vice president and regional head, reported that 24 percent of the P7.08 billion, or P1.72 billion was released to small farmers and fisherfolks (SFF) cooperatives and other financial conduits such as rural banks, irrigators' associations and farmers' organizations.

Leyba, who presented the region's year-end report to the media during Friday's Kapihan sa PIA-XI, said LBP also covers in its priority sectors the small and medium entrepreneurs (SMEs) and micro enterprises, agri-infrastructure projects of the local government units, agri-related projects of government-owned controlled corporations and agri-businesses.


He disclosed that the top five cooperative borrowers in Davao Region included USPD Multi-purpose Cooperative in Digos City, Davao del Sur; Hijo Employees Agrarian Reform Beneficiaries Cooperative 1 (Hearbco 1) and Hijo Agrarian Reform Beneficiaries Cooperative (Harbco), both in Tagum City; SCI Development in Tandag, Surigao del Sur; and Mangloy Multi-purpose Cooperative in Laak, Compostela Valley.

As of October this year, Leyba accounted P506 million loans provided to the SMEs. He said P299 million was released for rice production through the cooperatives, irrigators' associations, farmers' organizations and rice millers, benefiting about 2,873 farmers and covering 3,439.48 hectares.

LBP also recorded P577.48 million loans that went to Countryside Financial Institutions, while "loans to LGUs grew by 68 percent to P4.94 billion from last year's P2.80 billion."

The loan window also provided for the livelihood loans, environment-related projects, socialized housing, schools and hospitals.

In a press statement, Leyba said: "Our sustained efforts to deliver credit assistance to our development partners particularly the small farmers and fisherfolk cooperatives, micro enterprise and SMEs in Southern Mindanao is in support to the overall commitment of Landbank to spur growth and progress in the countryside."

The LBP official, meanwhile, stressed the present administration’s thrusts on food production through the recently launched Food Supply Chain program and infrastructure development that bank on the private-public partnership (PPP) strategy.

Leyba reported that the bank has allocated P50 billion fund to support the government's food supply chain program nationwide, in a bid to promote food security and increase agricultural productivity and income of the farmers.

He said LBP has partnered with the Department of Finance to implement the program which was able to forge partnerships in a memorandum of understanding involving anchor firms in Mindanao. (PR)

Published in the Sun.Star Davao newspaper on December 08, 2010.


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