27 March 2020

Published also in Business Mirror

To support micro and small businesses and cushion the economic impact of the spread of coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) virus in the country, the Small Business Corp. is setting up a P1-billion Enterprise Rehabilitation Financing facility under the Pondo sa Pagbabago at Pag-asenso (named Covid19 P3-ERF).

The facility will be implemented once the community quarantine declaration is lifted by the national government and/or respective local government units.

Trade Secretary Ramon M. Lopez said the P3-ERF facility is part of the economic relief program of President Duterte for small businesses greatly affected and further marginalized by the Covid-19 epidemic.

The SB Corporation, an agency under the Department of Trade and Industry, said the ERF loan fund is open to micro and small enterprises with at least one year continuous operation prior to March 2020, and whose businesses suffered a drastic reduction in sales during the ensuing epidemic.

Micro enterprises with asset size of not more than P3 million may borrow P10,000 up to P200,000, while small enterprises with asset size of not more than P10 million may borrow a higher loan amount but will not exceed P500,000.

The loan shall be used to help the enterprise stabilize, or recover from its losses. Specifically, the following purposes are qualified: updating of loan amortizations for vehicle loans or other fixed asset loans of the business; inventory replacement for perishable stocks damaged, and working capital replacement to restart the business.

The interest rate shall be at 0.5 percent per month (discounted basis), and a grace period on payments shall be given until such time that the economic crisis has abated.