SB Corp hikes microloans

The Small Business Corp. (SB Corp.) has released a total P 176.8 million in loans to rural micro enterprises in 10 of the country’s poorest provinces. Of this total P118.4 million was funded under the Rural Micro-Enterprise Promotion Program (RuMEPP).

RuMEPP, a seven-year program with $18.53 million funding from the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), aims to increase economic development and reduce poverty in the rural areas through improved job generation. It has three component: microfinance credit and support, micro enterprise promotion and development, and program and policy coordination.

The program targets micro-enterprises situated in 19 provinces of the country’s five poorest regions namely Cordillera Administrative Region, Bicol, Eastern Visayas, SOCCSKSARGEN and CARAGA.

Among the target regions, CARAGA Region in Mindanao particularly the provinces of Agusan del Norte, Agusan del Sur, Surigao del Norte and Surigao del Sur received 76.8 percent or P83.85 million of the total loan releases. Albay, Camarines Sur and Catanduanes were able to access P3.8 million. While Leyte, Biliran and Northern Samar received P19.3 million.

These microfinance loans were dispensed through six microfinance institution (MFI) in Mindanao, three in Visayas and four in Luzon. Beneficiaries of the loan are rural enterprises engaged in trading, handicraft, food processing, transportation and services.

RuMEPP is a program of the Department of Trade and Industry designed to stimulate the development of micro-enterprises through combined financial and technical assistance from the Small Business Corp. (SBC) for loans, DTI-Regional/Provincial Offices for technical assistance and market matching activities, Cottage Industry Technology Center (CITC) for technical assistance, Center for International Trade Expositions and Missions (CITEM) for market promotion, Product Development and Design Center of the Philippines (PDDCP) for product development, Philippine Trade Training Center (PTTC) for training and seminars, and Bureau of Small and Medium Enterprise Development for the integrated program to assist the enterprises. (philstar)

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