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P5B loans ok’d for hog repopulation

The Department of Agriculture said its partner financial institutions have, so far, listed P5.62 billion worth of loans, including in Negros Occidental, that are awaiting approval to fund the country’s hog repopulation and rehabilitation activities.

National Livestock Program director Ruth Miclat-Sonaco said in a live-streamed briefer that the Land Bank of the Philippines has written the largest chunk of the total figure with 25 applications worth P3.287 billion.

“These are applications nationwide, two of these are already approved,” she added.

Twenty-three applications were received from Tarlac, Isabela, Pampanga, Zambales, Cavite, Rizal, Occidental Mindoro, Iloilo, Negros Occidental, Cebu, Misamis Oriental, Bukidnon, and South Cotabato.

LandBank and the Development Bank of the Philippines are allocating P15 billion and P12 billion, respectively, for lending to commercial raisers.

The DBP has, so far, processed for approval seven accounts that applied for financial backing in their breeder farms and one wean to finish farm which is worth P2.3 billion.

Meanwhile, the DA, through the Agricultural Credit and Policy Council, has also offered zero-interest loans, payable in three to five years.

Miclat-Sonaco showed data that ACPC has, so far, pre-approved 365 loan applications of individual small backyard hog raisers, all worth P32.33 million.

The DA-ACPC has set aside an initial budget of P500 million for this financing program.

The DA’s biggest investments, the national hog repopulation and “Bantay sa ASF sa Barangay” twin programs, have a combined public and private investments of P29.6 billion.

Miclat-Sonaco said the key to preventing the further spread of African swine fever is improving the raisers’ biosecurity measures as she cited these efforts through the BaBAy Program.

Agriculture Secretary William Dar earlier said the twin programs span three years in implementation and will bear fruits gradually.*PNA

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