DBP completes disbursement of P1-B interest rate subsidy to LGUs
MANILA -As the state of emergency prompted by the pandemic was lifted, Development Bank of the Philippine said it has wrapped up the disbursement of P1-billion worth of interest rate subsidy to local government units for their COVID-19 response and recovery efforts.
Michael de Jesus, DBP president and chief executive, said in a statement this was part of the state-run bank’s Asenso-Bayanihan Interest Subsidy Fund (ISF) program, which benefited a a total of 264 LGUs that were mostly classified as second- to sixth class.
In turn, the ISF program was part of the menu of financial assistance of the national government under Republic Act 11494 or the Bayanihan to Heal as One Act.
The law mandated government financial institutions such as DBP to provide subsidies to LGUs for new and existing loans tapped for the implementation of their respective COVID-19 response and recovery interventions such as permanent working capital and acquisition of agricultural equipment and construction.
De Jesus said that through the DBP Asenso-Bayanihan ISF program, LGUs were able to conserve financial resources for interest payments, which were channeled to other essential developmental projects that helped create opportunities amidst the slowdown in the national economy.
He said that the majority of projects supported by the program covered infrastructure development such as construction of roads and bridges, multipurpose buildings, acquisition of heavy equipment units, and COVID-related infrastructure projects.
“As the disbursement phase of the ISF concludes, DBP remains determined to sustain its support for the nation’s economic recovery efforts and explore avenues that will contribute to our country’s overall progress,” de Jesus said.
On July 21, President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. signed Proclamation No. 297 that took effect immediately. It lifted the Public Health Emergency throughout the Philippines that was declared due to the COVID-19.
Also, all issuances that were intended to take effect only during the period of emergency were withdrawn, revoked and cancelled.
In a related development, the Insurance Commission said the number of COVID-related insurance claims paid by insurance companies and health maintenance organizations (HMOs) decreased during the second half of 2022, as the number of cases also declined.
Based on a survey conducted by the IC, insurance companies and HMOs paid a total of 137,478 claims during the period, a sharp decline from 359,622 claims in the same period in 2021
Similarly, data from the Department of Health (DOH) showed that the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases during the second half of 2022 dropped to 287,229 from 1.1 million in the same period the previous year.
The survey showed further that the amount of COVID-related claims paid by insurers also dropped to ₱1.53 billion from ₱7.65 billion.