DTI has P8 billion for MSMEs affected by Covid-19 pandemic

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The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) said on Wednesday that it has so far received P8 billion to be used as loan assistance for micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) under its Covid-19 (coronavirus disease 2019) Assistance to Restart Enterprises (CARES) program.

During its budget hearing at the Senate, the DTI said that that of the P8 billion, which was released to them by the Department of Budget and Management (DBM), around P1.2 billion has already been lent to 1,160 MSMEs. DTI is undertaking the CARES program for MSMEs through the Small Business Corporation (SB Corp.).

It was last October 27 that SB Corp. opened applications for new batch of MSMEs to benefit from the CARES program, which provides loansat zero-percent interest with a minimal service fee, and a six-month grace period.

The Bayanihan to Recover as One Act (Bayanihan 2) allocates P10 billion for DTI through SB Corp. To undertake the CARES program.

However, during the Senate hearing, Senator Juan Edgardo “Sonny” Angara said there are more than 26,000 loan applications from MSMEs that are still pending with the DTI, adding that these businesses are employing five to 10 personnel each, translating to 130,000 to 260,000 employed Filipinos. CURRENT PH

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