DTI sets micro loans to affected MSMEs

Published January 16, 2020, 12:00 AM

by manilabulletin_admin

By Bernie Cahiles-Magkilat

The Department of Trade and industry is rolling out loans and micro financial assistance for micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) affected by the Taal Volcano eruption.

DTI Secretary Ramon M. Lopez said they just approved Thursday an initial rollout of ₱50 million for the existing and small businesses affected by the Taal Volcano eruption last Sunday. The initial amount would be funded by SB Corp. under would be part of the DTI’s P3 (Pondo sa Pagbabago at Pag-asenso) Program.

He said 40-60 percent of businesses have closed operations for one or two days, but are now reopening their businesses to the public.

He said that DTI is expected its technical team to finish the profiling and assessment of the micro small and medium enterprises in the affected areas yesterday afternoon to start the rollout by next week.

Instead of directly giving out the funds, the DTI will implement a card system for the financing that they can use to pay for their needs to restart their small businesses. The micro financing would range from ₱7,000 to ₱10,000 for each qualified borrower.

“Those that will join the program will simply report to us their sales to ensure controls,” he said.

For those still starting, the DTI will conduct livelihood training programs.

Meantime, Lopez reported that DTI ensures that prices of basic necessities and prime commodities in the affected areas are sold within the suggested retail prices (SRP) stressing that a price freeze automatically took effect for the affected areas that have been declared under a state of calamity.

Since agriculture supplies from Batangas, Cavite and Laguna provinces have been disrupted, Lopez said supplies from other provinces that are not affected will have to augment shortfall.