Agri sector gets P261.7B in Landbank loans
Land Bank of the Philippines (LBP) extended P261.7 billion in loans to the beleaguered agriculture sector in 2022, 5.5 percent more than the loans granted the previous year, as part the state-run financial institution’s efforts to help more food producers.
The loans last year benefited 3.5 million farmers and fishers nationwide, with about 22 percent of them coming from the country’s 20 poorest provinces.
Provinces with the most beneficiaries include Nueva Ecija, Maguindanao, Bohol, Leyte, Pangasinan, Cotabato, Isabela, Cagayan, South Cotabato and Ilocos Sur.
“For 2023, the bank is targeting to increase the number of small farmers and fishers cumulatively assisted to 3.6 million, among other key players in the agri-business value chain,” Landbank said in a statement on Tuesday.
Small, medium and large agribusiness enterprises cornered the bulk of the loans at P166.8 billion, followed by agri-aqua-related projects of local government units and government-owned and controlled corporations with P48.3 billion.
The remaining P46.6 billion went to small farmers and fishers, including those reached through cooperatives, farmers’ associations, rural financial institutions and other conduits.
In terms of economic activities, agri-processing and trading took the lion’s share of the loans at P107.4 billion.
The sector borrowed P87.7 billion to finance other support services, including the construction and improvement of farm-to-market roads, public markets, irrigation systems, and cold storage, among others and P66.5 billion to bolster livestock and crop production.
“We remain committed to delivering timely and accessible credit to boost economic activities in the countryside and the country’s overall food production,” said Landbank president and CEO Cecilia Cayosa Borromeo.
Meanwhile, Landbank said it was bolstering its partnership with the Department of Agriculture (DA) and the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) to help more farmers and fisherfolk.
As of end-December 2022, the state bank’s cumulative loan releases under the programs jointly implemented with DA have reached P15.3 billion to support over 252,000 borrowers.
Likewise, it released P751.7 million to 229 agrarian reform beneficiaries’ organizations (ARBOs) under its joint programs with DAR.
Landbank is also working with local governments to build and rehabilitate infrastructure projects crucial to creating an efficient agriculture value chain.
These include financing for the construction of 953.7 kilometers of farm-to-market roads, 4.5 kilometers of bridges, 50 public markets, and 14 irrigation systems, among others, from January to December 2022.
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