If you are looking to start a business, great news that the government had launched a lending program, called Pondo sa Pagbabago at Pag-asenso (P3).
The program started last March and still ongoing. From the earlier reports, the government will lend money to 10, 500 micro, small and medium entrepreneurs (MSMEs) this year alone. Ramon Lopez, Trade Secretary, said that“The P3 is designed to bring down the interest rate at which micro-finance is made available to micro enterprises.”
Now the question is, who can borrow from this lending program?
There is Php19 billion worth of funds for the next five years, P3 aims to finance micro, small, and medium businesses. Furthermore, they want to eliminate the 5-6 lending that charges 20% of interest per month.
People who can borrow are those who own small-medium business. The government is giving priority to these businesses that can’t afford bank loans. Businesses such as:
- Market vendors
- Cooperative members and associations and;
How much would be the loanable amount and interest?
This lending program doesn’t required collateral. The minimum loanable amount is Php5, 000.00 and the maximum amount is Php300, 000.00. For the interest, it shall be 2.17% monthly; a big difference compared to the 20% interest rate of 5-6 lending businesses.
Lopez said “Fund delivery to micro-enterprises shall be carried out in either by wholesale lending to non-bank financial institutions like MFI-INGOs and cooperatives which shall on-lend the fund to beneficiaries or by direct lending by SB Corp.”. So in short, among the government’s priorities are entrepreneurs who don’t have easy access to credit.
Which places or provinces would get the most out of this lending program?
For this year, the allocated budget of the program is P1 billion. It was first launched in the provinces of Mindoro, Leyte Islands, and Sarangani. These places are prioritized as these places are among the top 30 poorest provinces in the country. However, we hope and look forward to this program being spread nationwide. To give you an idea, here are the top 20 poorest provinces in the Philippines:
- Lanao del Sur (ARMM region)
- Sulu (ARMM region)
- Sarangani (Region 12)
- Northern Samar (Region 8)
- Maguindanao (ARMM region)
- Bukidnon (Region 10)
- Sultan Kudarat (Region 12)
- Zamboanga del Norte (Region 9)
- Siquijor (Region 7)
- Agusan del Sur (Caraga)
- Eastern Samar (Region 8)
- Lanao del Norte (Region 10)
- Mountain Province (CAR region)
- Western Samar (Region 8)
- North Cotabato (Region 12)
- Catanduanes (Region 5)
- Leyte (Region 8)
- Negros Oriental (Region 7)
- Zamboanga Sibugay (Region 9)
- Sorsogon (Region 5)
What are the requirements and procedure in availing this program?
Like any other program, you need to submit certain requirements or documentation to prove the legitimacy of the business you are declaring. You would have to submit:
- 2 Government-issued IDs (Original and photocopy)
- Business Name Registration
- Mayor’s Permit
- Market Clearance
After completing the above, you would have to be aware of the procedure.
Step 1: Visit the nearest Negosyo Center in your area. Inquire about the P3 Program.
Step 2: Duly accomplish the application form that will be given to you then and there.
Step 3: The Small Business Corp., as an attached body of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), may conduct customer intelligence (CI) or background investigation on your application to determine your capacity for the loan you are wanting to accomplish.
Step 4: Fully be attentive with what the organizations will require of you for your documents. The ones listed above are just the basic documents.
Step 5: Your loan will be released upon the completion of the background investigations and your documents.
In case there is no SB Corporation branches in your area, you can also visit accredited microfinance institutions or cooperatives.
Take note that the application for the P3 program is free. Furthermore, they DO NOT entertain individuals or groups who are recruiting and asking for accreditation fees, placement fees, etc. in exchange for the arrangement of immediate release of loans.
This could really help inspiring Filipino entrepreneurs who need financial assistance.
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