P3 launching in SOCCSKSARGEN

Usec. Zenaida C. Maglaya of DTI Regional Operations Group urged the first and second batch of beneficiaries to ensure the project’s success by paying their loans on time so the money paid can still be reloaned by them and others who need funding assistance as well.

SOCCSKSARGEN – Alabel, Sarangani Province, on January 31, 2017, the Small Business Corporation, an attached agency of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) and the Regional Office of DTI 12 through the Office of the DTI Sarangani have launched the Pondo sa Pagbabago at Pag-Asenso (P3) at the Alabel Gymnasium, morning of the said date.

Undersecretary of the Department of Trade and Industry for Regional Operations Group (DTI-ROG), Zenaida Cuison Maglaya and Mr. Brillo Reynes, President /CEO of the SB Corporation graced the event as Guest Speakers.

Sarangani Governor Steve Chiongbian Solon, and some provincial officials as well as regional DTI 12 officials, headed by Regional Director Ibrahim Guiamadel and other national government agency officials as well as the media in the South Cotabato – Sarangani and General Santos City area were also present during the event. Alabel Mayor Vic Salarda, who is currently in Japan, was represented by Municipal Administrator Gerson Demaala.

Pondo sa Pagbabago at Pag-asenso or P3, as explained by SB Corporation President, Mr. Brillo N. Reynes, is a funding program to provide microenterprises an alternative source of financing that is easy to access and made available at a reasonable cost. This program gives a boost to the development of the MSME sector, particularly the microenterprises that comprise about 90% of registered enterprises in the country.

Reynes explained that P3 Program Funding is in line with the President’s directive to provide affordable micro-financing program for MSMEs. The d2017 General Appropriations Act (GAA) included Php 1.0 Billion for financial assistance subsidy to microenterprises under the P3 Program. Depending on the performance of this initial funding, P3 may be scaled up and included in the GAA for subsequent years.

Usec. Zenaida C. Maglaya explained in her keynote speech addressed to the guests particularly to the microenterprises and entrepreneurs, the main beneficiaries of the program, that as the primary beneficiaries of the program, they no longer have to access credit at very high interest because P3 is already here to provide assistance to their financing needs at a very affordable interest rate. She identified market vendors, agribusiness men and members of cooperatives, Industry associations and cooperators as P3’s target beneficiaries.

Addressing the crowd in Filipino, Maglaya also emphasized that, “Dapat nating isaisip na dahil ang pondong ito ay nanggagaling sa kaban ng ating bayan, ito ay dapat nating bayaran sa tamang panahon, nang sa ganuon ito ay muli nating mahihiram at maipapahiram pa sa iba pa nating mga kababayan na nangangailangan rin tulad natin.”

Later, during the launching program, DTI and SB Corporation awarded loan certificates to twelve initial beneficiaries amounting to P285,000 and another nine beneficiaries the following day with a total of P190,000.00. Most of the loan beneficiaries are MSMEs whose stalls are located in the Alabel Public Market.

The Small Business Corporation, an attached agency of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) shall administer the P3 Program. Aside from creating a Program Management Office to oversee the management and monitoring of the P3 Fund, SB Corporation will make use of its lending network and the DTI Negosyo Centers in reaching out to P3 beneficiaries. It shall manage the P3 Fund through separate books (from SB Corporation proper) that will be subject to COA audit.

The Small Business Corporation (SB Corp) will deploy the P3 Fund through two modes of delivery. The more extensive distribution system will be under wholesale lending where SB Corp will partner with conduits. These are selected micro-finance institutions, cooperatives, associations and other organizations. The other delivery mode is the direct retail lending, this may include individual enterprise borrowers, start-ups and other funding needs.

P3 Funds are still to be drawn from the Department of Budget and Management (DBM). In the meantime, SB Corp will already be working out the operating mechanics with some members of the Microfinance Council of the Philippines Inc. (MCPI) and of the National Confederation of Cooperatives Inc. (NATCCO).

Loan amounts to end-borrowers will be in the range of P5,000 to P100,000, at a maximum interest rate of 2.5% per month, with no collateral requirement. The rate compares well with the 10-20% per month charged by other fund providers. Other delivery mode is direct retail lending, limited by SB Corp’s reach and targeting more specialized borrower segments so that this is only a small fraction of the P3 Funds. This may include individual enterprise borrowers, start-ups and other funding needs that are not usually responded to by formal sources of funds. P3 allocates P100 million for direct lending by SB Corp. Target loan beneficiaries are the small enterprises in priority and emerging industries, start-up businesses and technology innovators. Minimum loan amount will be P300,000 with interest rate capped at 10% p.a., with or without collateral cover.