By Franco Regala
CITY OF SAN FERNANDO, Pampanga –— Micro small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs) whose businesses were adversely affected by the COVID-19 crisis may avail of an emergency loan package with very low interest and a prolonged grace period, the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) said Wednesday.
DTI-3 Regional Director Judith P. Angeles said the proposed loan package will be funded by an additional P1 billion to be administered by the Small Business Corporation (SBC) through its field offices throughout the country.
According to her, the proposed loan facility will be in addition to the regular Pondo sa Pagbabago at Pag-asenso (P3) of the SB Corporation.
Under the proposed package, MSMEs may avail of a loan with very low interest of only 0.5 percent per month. To help MSMEs tide over the lower economic activity, a prolonged grace period is also included in the conditions of the loan until such time that the COVID-19 crisis has abated.
Angeles said the loan facility will be available to small enterprises whose asset size is valued up to P10 million.
For micro entrepreneurs whose asset size is P3 Million or below, a loan size of up to P500,000 will be provided. P500 million of the fund will be reserved for smaller entrepreneurs.
Angeles disclosed that MSMEs were the hardest hit and the most easily affected by the threat of the COVID-19 and the emergency community quarantine situation.
Despite the quarantine, she said that the agency in the province continues to support the unhampered movement of essential goods and services to ensure that consumers have access to basic needs and prime commodities.
DTI3, she added, also continues to monitor prices to make sure that there is no profiteering and retailers follow the published frozen prices set by the Department.
The Board of Directors of the SBC is set to take up the loan package proposal as part of their emergency meeting this week, said Angeles.