Five More Negros Farmers’ Groups Gets P15-M Credit From DAR

on .
dar-web-news-1-pix-2-july-27-2013The Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) has released another P15 million worth of credit facilities to five agrarian reform beneficiaries organizations in Negros Occidental, a day after President Aquino vowed in his State of the Nation Address (SONA) to continue with government programs that boost agricultural productivity in the country.

The credit facility, made possible through the Agrarian Production Credit Program (APCP), is extended to provide capital to 250 cash-strapped agrarian reform beneficiaries who had been awarded 251 hectares of land planted with sugarcane.

Cognizant of the beneficiaries’ lack of financial resources, the government has made these loans available at a lower interest rate of 8.5% per annum.

The organizations that received their APCP loans were the Pacao Women’s Association (PACWA) of Barangay Bantayan, Kabankalan City; Tagoc ARBs and Farmers Association (TARBEFA) of Barangay Tagoc, Kabankalan City; Magbawa III Women’s Association of Barangay Magballo, Kabankalan City; Estela Agrarian Reform Cooperative (EARC) of Barangay San Miguel, La Carlota City; and UpadMirasolBanuyo ARB MPC (UMIBA) also of La Carlota City.

The awarding of the credit facility was led by ARDO Florentino Siladan, OIC PARO II Lucrecia Taberna and CARPO Ronald Gareza in a ceremony held in cooperation with a local TV channel.

“Daku gid ini nga bulig sa amon nga pagpanguma, makabakal na kami sg abono kag may inugbayad na kami sa traktora, sa ikasanyog sa amon nga mga tanum (This is a big help to us farmers, we now have the money for the fertilizers and for payment to tractor fees),” said Mebelyn Villarosa, who is the Chair of PACWA.

Noel Maningo, Chair of UMIBA, said, “Hindi na kami mangutang sa tama ka taas nga interes kay may arina kami makuhaan nga pondo. Ang amon mga katapu, hindi na gid matam-an sa mapiguson nga sa saka sg amon gina-utang, may Kooperatiba kami nga sarang mautangan.” (We will no longer contend ourselves with high interest rate. Our members will have alternative source of credit, that is, from our Coop.)

Mercedita Eleuterio of the Magbawa group, for her part, said: “we will take care of this credit facility; more so, we will take care of the trust the DAR and LBP (Land Bank of the Philippines) have given us.”

A couple of weeks ago, DAR Negros-South, in partnership with the Department of Agriculture and Land Bank of the Philippines, had also approved and released a total of P124,053,950 worth of loans to 30 Agrarian Reform Beneficiaries Organizations (ARBOs).

The APCP, a joint program of the DAR, LandBank, and the Department of Agriculture, is a new credit program for agrarian reform beneficiaries (ARBs) approved by President Benigno Aquino III with a P1-billion funding.dar-web-news-1-pix-1-july-27-2013

The APCP aims to provide credit support for crop production to newly organized as well as existing ARBOs and farmers’ organizations not qualified to avail themselves of loans under the regular credit windows of banks.

The program’s specific objectives include providing credit assistance to ARBs or ARB household members through their respective organizations or other conduits to support their individual or communal crop production projects; ensure sustainable production of crops and increase the income of ARBs or their household members through other support services such as marketing, crop insurance, and farming facilities; and strengthen the ARBOs and improve the capabilities of ARBs through institutional capability building activities.

The APCP has three components, namely agricultural production credit, agricultural production and financial management support, and institutional capacity building.