P20 billion available to boost countryside growth

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BAGUIO CITY January 08 – Middle income municipalities and barangays can now access over P20 billion available funds of the Philippine Veterans Bank (PVB) which could be used to bankroll their priority infrastructure and income-generating projects that would contribute to countryside development, a senior PVB official said here.

Miguel Angelo C. Villareal, PVB vice president for corporate communications and marketing, said the bank’s P20 billion exposure is the institutions contribution to empower second and third class municipalities to focus on securing corporate loans with reasonable interest that will help in uplifting the status of their localities and increasing economic activities in the rural areas.

“We want to contribute in countryside development to help achieve the government’s goal of economic growth starting from the rural communities,” Villareal stressed.

He said among the possible projects to be funded by the corporate loans to be availed by the interested local governments include the building of farm to market roads, potable water systems, irrigation facilities, livelihood centers and income-generating projects that would guarantee the repayment of the short-term loan for the second class and third class municipalities.

“We are offering an interest of 5 percent per anum and a repayment period of five years for the interested municipalities. In the case of barangays with excellent business proposals, the loan repayment period could be up to seven years,” Villareal said.

He cited PVB is looking into ways on how to effectively and efficiently reduce the stringent loan requirements being requested from their clients without compromising the bank’s regulatory and investigative powers to check on the feasibility of proposals so that more middle income local governments will be able to avail of soft loans beneficial to rural economic development.

The PVB official 7underscored countryside development would mean the creation and generation of jobs for the qualified people in the locality, increased economic activities of people and the availability of sources of livelihood in order to ensure the circulation of money within the area.

According to him, around P10 billion was already exposed by the bank for several local governments and private corporations that availed of the corporate soft loans and another P10 billion has been earmarked in order to increase the bank’s exposure to projects contributory to rural development in the future.

Villareal said there is a need for middle income local governments to venture into availing of similar loans in order to contribute in fastracking the upliftment of their status to help in the country’s overall economic growth and improve the standards of living in the countryside.

“We have decently available funds for interested local governments. Even barangays with good financial standing could avail of such loans, provided, they are able to present good business proposals because we also consider in our evaluation the contribution of their projects to rural development,” Villareal stated.

He appealed interested local governments to consult their branches nearest to their places so that assistance will be extended to them on how to avail of the loans. By Dexter A. See

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