MANKAYAN, Benguet – Mayor Frenzel A. Ayong urged individual and groups of farmers in the vegetable-producing communities in the municipality to wisely use the proceeds of their loans from government banks and other financial institutions to help in allowing them to hurdle the negative effects of the ongoing Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic.
The local chief executive served as the guest during the recent orientation of some 80 prospective farmer beneficiaries in the loan being offered by the Land Bank of the Philippines as part of the government’s assistance to the agriculture sector to pave the way for the gradually and safe recovery of the local economy which had been heavily impacted by the global health pandemic that had existed for over a year now.
“We urge our farmers to wisely use the proceeds of their loans to improve their productivity to ensure that their produce will be able to command higher buying prices once the same will be brought to the different trading centers inside and outside the province. We cannot afford to simply waste the golden opportunities given to us to have sufficient capital to expand our existing economic activities that had been impacted by the pandemic,” Mayor Ayong stressed.
Under the aforesaid loan being offered by the Land Bank to the farmers, individual farmers could avail as much as P1 million loan while farmers associations can borrow as much as P5 million depending on the assessment of the institution on their capacity to pay such loan.
He pointed out that the interest of the loan is subsidized by some funds that had been prescribed under the pertinent provisions of the Bayanihan 2 law that is why farmers should take advantage of the low interest so that they will be able to source out additional capital to allow them to recover from the effects of the pandemic to their well-established economic activities.
According to him, everyone needs to start somewhere to allow the gradual and safe resumption of their economic activities and the available loans provided by government banks and other financial institutions that have the least interest is worthy of availing so that people will be able to contribute in jumpstarting the heavily devastated local economy to allow the generation of jobs and the sustainability of the sources of livelihood.
He stipulated that infusing added capitalization to help in boosting the local economy is a welcome development at this time but the interest rates that should be charged must be at the minimal level to help heavily impacted businesses to be able to recover by being able to bring back the vibrance of the economic activities of people.
However, Mayor Ayong warned people from obtaining loans from possible loan sharks that will surely worsen their prevailing situation instead of allowing them to cope up with the existing difficult situation, thus, they also be circumspect in deciding which among those offering loans will they obtain the same.
Mankayan is one of the 5 first-class municipalities in the province and one of the 3 towns that source majority of their income from the continuous operation of large-scale and small-scale mining in various parts of the localities. The town’s upland barangays are considered to be the vegetable basket of the municipality being producers of quality highland vegetables while its lower barangays are the mineral-rich ones that provide livelihood for the miners working in the companies and pocket mining groups. By HENT