THE Department of Agriculture’s (DA) credit arm, the Agriculture Credit Policy Council (DA-ACPC), said on Thursday it released an initial P180 million in loanable funds to the Land Bank of the Philippines (LandBank) to help farmers increase their productivity under the liberalized regime.
The amount is part of the P1-billion credit component of the P10-billion Rice Competitiveness Enhancement Fund (RCEF) obligated to LandBank, as stipulated in Republic Act 11203, or the “Rice Liberalization Law.”
In a statement, LandBank Assistant Vice President Edgardo Luzano said the funds could be accessed by eligible farmers in 59 provinces.
Such farmers are those enlisted in the Registry System of Basic Sectors in Agriculture (RSBSA) and who have no outstanding balance from formal lending institutions and DA-ACPC credit conduits.
To avail themselves the subsidized loans, the farmers should also have undergone technical training on rice-related projects.
Rice farmers who are members of cooperatives can also avail themselves of the loan facility, provided that they are duly registered with the Cooperatives Development Authority (CDA).
Luzano explained that interested borrowers from cooperatives needed to pass documentary requirements. These are the loan application form, certificate of accreditation from DA, photocopy of certificate of registration from the CDA, biodata of incumbent officers and board of directors with ID, authorized board resolution, audited financial statement, business/farm plan, and updated business permit.
“The documentary requirements may seem tedious, but most are already and readily available in their cooperatives,” Luzano said, adding that the documents would only be required for first-time applicants.
“They will no longer be required to resubmit the same documents for additional or renewal of loans,” he added.
As of October 17, Luzano said about 80 percent or P142.3 million of the total funds available to LandBank have been availed of (P17.64 million) or being processed by lending centers (P124.66 million).