The Small Business Corporation (SB Corp), the micro financing entity of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), continues to assist internally displaced persons (IDPs) and uniformed personnel including their families who were either killed or wounded during the five-month Marawi conflict last year.

DTI Secretary Ramon Lopez said the agency will reach out to more IDPs to help hasten Marawi City’s recovery and invigorate business activity in Lanao del Sur.

We are giving our commitment to the IDPs that the administration of President Duterte will continue to seek ways in providing business and livelihood opportunities to help them and Marawi recover,” said Sec. Lopez.

As of 21 October 2018, SB Corp. has provided livelihood assistance to at least 422 Maranao entrepreneurs with total loans amounting to P6,165,000 through the Pondo sa Pagbabago at Pag-asenso (P3) program. Beneficiaries have availed of loans ranging from P10,000 to P20,000.

SB Corp has earmarked P50 million in loans for Marawi.

The financial assistance to Marawi entrepreneurs follows Administrative Order No. 03, which created an inter-agency task force for the recovery, reconstruction, and rehabilitation of Marawi City and other affected localities.

To assist the families of the wounded and deceased uniformed personnel, SB Corp. also extended livelihood assistance under its special program, Wounded-and-Killed in Action (WIA-KIA).

SB Corp. has assisted 224 WIA-KIA beneficiaries with loans released totaling P16,531,500. Beneficiaries have availed loans ranging from P40,000 to P100,000.

Likewise, the agency has earmarked P50 million for WIA-KIA families with existing micro enterprises.

The DTI leads the Task Force Bangon Marawi (TFBM) Subcommittee on Business and Livelihood (SC-BL) to fast track the recovery and rehabilitation of business in Marawi City.

Sec. Lopez said that more entrepreneurs will be assisted by the agency through loan packages without interest.

Access to zero-interest microfinancing is very important to entrepreneurs who are starting as well as those expanding their businesses. With the business seminars offered by DTI and the loan packages by SB Corp. for the affected families and residents, we’re speeding up the recovery of the city,” the trade chief added.

Other micro enterprises who are neither DTI starter kit recipients nor Marawi public market stall owners, may apply for P3 loans from SB Corp accredited conduits such as Radiowealth Finance Company Inc. (RFC) and CARD, Inc. who are presently operating in the area.

The P3 program for Marawi will also provide credit support to microfinancing institutions (MFIs) including rural banks who want to start lending in Lanao del Sur in exchange for their timely and quick response. Loan qualification criteria will be relaxed to support gradual normalization of MFI operation in Lanao del Sur and nearby provinces where the displaced microenterprises were temporarily relocated. ♦

Date of Release: 24 October 2018