TACLOBAN CITY – At least 64 agrarian reform beneficiaries (ARBs) in Southern Leyte have availed of the credit assistance program offered by the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) thru the Land Bank of the Philippines (LBP) in more than two years.
Mark Obregon, monitoring and evaluation coordinator of DAR Southern Leyte provincial office, said on Friday some PHP3.6 million have been released by the state-run bank to the beneficiaries under DAR’s accessible fund for delivery to ARBs (AFFORD-ARBs) credit assistance program from 2021 until early 2023.
Under the AFFORD-ARBs program, LBP provides direct credit assistance to individual ARBs not yet members of ARB organizations.
The loans can be used for the production of rice, corn and high-value crops, and the acquisition of small farm implements, such as hand tractors and power tillers.
“Borrowers in Southern Leyte used the amount as capital to improve their abaca and cacao productions. We have been encouraging agrarian reform beneficiaries to avail of the different credit assistance programs offered by DAR since it has minimal interest rates,” Obregon said in a statement.
The financing program is seen as an opportunity for the ARBs to recover from the devastation of Typhoon Odette which battered the province in December 2021.
In this program, LBP no longer asks for collateral in availing the AFFORD-ARBs loan.
However, the borrower must not have any other insurance application with the Philippine Crop Insurance Company (PCIC), since the proceeds they will get from PCIC will serve as their collateral. (PNA)