July 22, 2024

The city government of Baguio on Tuesday started to release the loan assistance to 64 initial beneficiaries of the stimulus package for micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs).
Leticia Clemente, head of the city’s finance committee and budget officer, said the Baguio Revitalization Actions for a Vibrant Economy-Economic Stimulus Package (Brave-ESP) is a zero-interest, soft loan of the city government for 9,209 MSMEs affected by the closure of non-essential businesses when the government started imposing a lockdown in March. It is a non-collateral loan.
She said the assistance is given to MSMEs based in the city which are not recipients of any assistance from any government agency.
Beneficiary businesses must be Filipino-owned, legitimately operating for at least a year as shown in their permit to operate. They must also have a good credit status and not in the “negative list” of borrowers.
“While we want to help, we also protect the fund considering that it is government money owned by the people,” she said.
Clemente said the city government allotted P100 million for the Brave-ESP where MSMEs beneficiaries can avail of a loan from P10,000 to P50,000, while small enterprises can get a loan of P50,000 to P100,000.
Under the guidelines, those who want to avail of the loan are given six to 24 months before they pay back.
The loan has a six percent service charge while eight percent will be charged to those who will pay back in more than 12 months.
The city government targeted about 2,900 beneficiaries but only 260 have filed applications to avail of the stimulus package. Out of the 260, only 64 qualified.
Data from the Permits and Licensing Division show that there are 23,059 registered businesses in Baguio.
A total of 20,484 are classified as micro, 2,074 small, 438 medium, and 63 categorized as large businesses.
The city gets P281.1-million annual revenue from businesses with a total of P155M contributed by small and micro enterprises or 55 percent of the city’s total revenue.
Mayor Benjamin Magalong said as the city’s partner for development, they look forward to seeing how MSMEs will be able to survive and succeed with the help of the fund provided to them.
“We trust you will be stewards of the fund, not all are privileged to avail. We want to see you regenerate your economic activities,” Magalong said.
He urged other businesses to avail of the stimulus package with more than P99M fund still available.
“We will continue to process until the fund is exhausted,” the mayor said. – PNA