DTI Urged To Fast Track ₱10-B Assistance Loans To MSMEs
It was recently announced that assistance will be given to micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) adversely affected by the COVID-19 pandemic in the form of loans through the Bayanihan 2. House Deputy Majority Leader and Bagong Henerasyon party-list Rep. Bernadette Herrera have sought to expedite disbursement of the ₱10- billion fund allocated for the said aid.
The ₱10-billion COVID-19 Assistance to Restart Enterprises (CARES) under the Bayanihan 2 is expected to lapse by December 10. Thus, the house leader is hoping that the Department of Trade (DTI) can ensure that the MSMEs could benefit from the said assistance as soon as possible.
Herrera said in a statement that Congress allocated that amount precisely to help these struggling MSMEs so that they could continue operating and paying their employees. She added that the economy is slowly opening up again and our MSMEs will play a big role in its revival, so we should provide them with the necessary assistance right away.”
She cited DTI’s data that out of the ₱10 billion allotted for the pro-MSMEs program, ₱8 billion has been downloaded to the Small Business Corp. (SBCorp). The amount should benefit around 100,000 enterprises and 200,000 workers.
Her concern was that based on DTI data, only a total of 6,600 loans, or equivalent to ₱1.2 billion have been approved so far. According to her estimates, a total of 26,000 CARES loan applications are still pending with the SBCorp. Thus, she’s calling the DTI to push SBCorp to fast track the processing of loans and release the money to qualified MSMEs ASAP.