P5.2B of loans granted to MSMEs affected by the pandemic – head of DTI Lopez
Some 5.2 billion pesos in loans have been released by the government to small businesses affected by restrictions to limit the spread of COVID-19, the Ministry of Commerce and Industry (DTI) said on Tuesday.
During Laging Handa’s briefing, Commerce Secretary Ramon Lopez said the amount covered 33,200 loan applications approved by Small Business Corp. (SB Corp.), the financing arm of the department.
“This number continues to increase,” he said, adding that the department’s loan program for micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) has received an additional budget of 2.4 billion pesos.
Lopez said earlier that sectors hit hard during the pandemic included tourism, transportation, entertainment, retail and other non-essential sectors.
“If we are to accelerate the recovery of our economy, we need to build consumer confidence and save MSMEs from bankruptcy to keep jobs and sources of income. With more income, that means more spending, which will stimulate demand and economic activity, ”he said in a statement last November.
The Philippine economy grew 11.8% year-on-year in the second quarter – the best quarterly performance in more than three decades – but still below pre-pandemic levels, according to the Philippine Statistics Authority last week. – Virgil Lopez / RSJ, GMA News