THE Land Bank of the Philippines (Landbank) is raising its available loan window in support of local pork producers and feed millers to P30 billion, from P15 billion, to finance stock repopulation and feed milling operations of stakeholders reeling from the adverse impact of the African swine fever (ASF).
This came following the directive from Finance Secretary and Landbank Chairman Carlos Dominguez III for the state lender to double its support for hog raisers, feed millers and other industry players dealing with supply shortfalls and retail price spirals of pork products.
“Landbank is doubling its funds available for financing swine repopulation, feed milling operations and facility upgrades in order to help address at the soonest the supply shortfalls and subsequent retail price spirals affecting both hog producers and pork consumers,” Dominguez said.
The funds will be available under the Landbank Swine (Special Window and Interim Support to Nurture Hog Enterprises) Lending Program for commercial hog raisers registered as cooperatives or farmers’ associations, small and medium enterprises and large enterprises or corporations.
On March 17, 2021, the state-run bank, in partnership with the Department of Agriculture (DA), launched the Swine Lending Program to support the local hog industry amid threats from the ASF outbreak and assist hog raisers in sustaining and increasing pork production.
As of April 15, 2021, Landbank said it is already processing six loan applications for the Swine Lending Program from the provinces of Tarlac, Cavite, Rizal, Bukidnon and South Cotabato, amounting to P2.96 billion combined.
Loans under this program shall be used for swine production, which includes the acquisition or importation of semen or breeding animals; feed milling operations; the construction, improvement or retrofitting of necessary facilities that are compliant to biosecurity protocols of DA, the industry or integrators; acquisition of fixed assets; and as working capital.
Eligible borrowers may avail of a short-term loan line or a term loan for up to 80 percent of their total project cost or financing requirement, with an affordable fixed interest rate of three percent per annum for three years, subject to annual re-pricing thereafter.
Under the program, short-term loans have a tenor of one year; term loan for permanent working capital is payable up to five years; and fixed asset acquisition is payable based on the cash flow or payback period of the project, with a grace period on the principal and interest.
The DA will provide the list of eligible program borrowers and assist them in the preparation of a business plan, enrollment in the Philippine Crop Insurance Corp. (PCIC), and in securing necessary permits.
The DA will also provide loan recipients training on biosecurity management and breeding or rearing of hogs, while engaging the services of different organizations in capability building and implementation of biosecurity protocols.
Landbank, for its part, will accept and evaluate loan applications of eligible borrowers and facilitate the release of loan proceeds.
It will also monitor the performance of the Program and provide monthly reports to the DA.
The Landbank Swine Lending Program will be available until Dec. 31, 2026 in support of the DA’s hog re-population plan. (PR)