BPI says to boost support for small, medium agri-related businesses

BPI announced on Tuesday that its Business Banking unit would expand funding for agriculture-related small and medium businesses.

According to BPI Business Banking head Eric Luchangco, the bank is “looking to expand its presence” in the field of agricultural enterprises because it recognizes the sector’s contribution to economic resilience and recovery.

According to the lender, BPI enables “agripreneurs” to use its targeted financing options for working capital, trade, and expansion plans.

“To reduce the hurdles of agripreneurs and to remain relevant to the Philippine economy, we had to increase our presence in this base. By helping fund the businesses of our clients, we can help everyone across the economy recover and find more opportunities moving forward,” Luchangco said during a BPI webinar called “Angat Agri-Entrepreneur.”

“We are reaching out to show our interest to support the agricultural value chain, including logistics, distribution, storage, and retail and wholesale trade,” he added.

Denrick Alcaraz, a quail farmer, and entrepreneur was able to grow his business with the aid of borrowed capital from BPI despite the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic, according to the bank.

“We have put off our expansion plan for a while because of the pandemic. Because of BPI’s help, we now have the opportunity in our hands to expand while the situation is getting better and more people to get vaccinated,” Alcaraz said. 

According to the Ayala-led lender, agricultural entrepreneurs can open a business deposit account and use the online banking platform during the COVID-119 pandemic.

BPI said its SME term loan program, which needs less paperwork, has no collateral, and quicker processing time aims to remove roadblocks to borrowing money.

According to the bank, other opportunities will be introduced by collaboration with partners such as the Agriculture-Agricultural Credit Policy Council and Globe myBusiness.

BPI has also signed an agreement with the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) to assist more entrepreneurs in regaining their footing and to expand financial inclusion in the region.

Consumers should take advantage of lower interest rates, according to the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas. The introductory interest rate has remained at 2% by the central bank.

The effect of COVID-19 and the constraints it entails has been felt by businesses across the world, large and small. Owing to the pandemic, companies have resorted to cost-cutting steps such as decrease and reduced operations, and some have temporarily or permanently closed.

Experts predict that the Philippines’ economy will begin to rise positively in the second quarter. In Q1, GDP contracted at a slower rate of 4.2 percent, compared to an 8.3 percent contraction in Q4 last year.

Source: ABS-CBN News

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