BAGUIO CITY – Mayor Mauricio G. Domogan urged established cooperatives in the city to start availing of the Credit Surety Fund (CRF) from the city government with the support of the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) to improve their financial standing beneficial to the greater interest of their members.
The local chief executive made the call during the opening program of the 2-day Basic Business Planning Continuation and Management for Cooperatives organized by the city government with the Cordillera office of the Cooperative Development Authority (CDA-CAR) to empower existing city cooperatives to engage in robust economic growth geared towards improving the lives of people.
“We must convince our people to be active members of cooperatives so they can avail of the benefits from cooperatives, especially in providing the needs of those who are in need of assistance with lesser burden to the populace,” Domogan stressed.
He reported that the BSP officials offered to the city government the CSF where organized cooperatives can avail of substantial financial assistance from the government with the local government as a guarantor for such availment.
According to him, the local government’s P2 million counterpart for the CSF came from the P5 million which he earmarked from his Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF) when he was still the representative of the lone district of Baguio City to the House of Representatives for the provision of non-collateral livelihood loans to qualified city residents.
He challenged small cooperatives to learn from the growth and development of the established cooperatives not only in the city but also in the other parts of the Cordillera for them to replicate their best practices and achieve significant improvements in their status.
He emphasized the CSF allows cooperatives to avail of financial assistance which the cooperatives can use to improve their standings and increase the services they provide to their members thus empowering people to be aggressively involved in economic activities that will spur the desired growth in their communities.
Domogan pointed out cooperatives provide members with good benefits, unlike loan sharks, because some of the loan interests they pay is plowed back to the members through patronage refunds and dividends of members once members patronize the services of the said cooperatives, thus, the more the members patronize the services of their cooperatives, the more benefits they get.
Currently, the national and local governments support the establishment of cooperatives in the countryside where similar cooperatives are actually located to contribute to efforts by concerned government agencies and the local government in improving people’s lives.
By Dexter A. See