BONTOC, Mountain Province – More than one million pesos is now available to be loaned out to Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) –applicants residing in Mountain Province who have completed all the necessary requirements and documents but lack the financial means to pay their placement fees.
Through the Provincial Overseas Employment Program Fund, the Provincial Government of Mountain Province is very willing to lend money with a very minimal interest of five percent per annum payable in 12 monthly installments starting one and a half month after the overseas worker’ arrival at the country destination. A three percent administrative cost is also deducted immediately from the loaned amount.
Simonette Clyde F. Fang-asan of the Office of the Governor said that the amount to be loaned by an applicant is dependent on the placement fee set by the placement agency and the country destination. Thus, the amount can range from P60, 000.00 to P150, 000.00.
Fang-asan assured that the processing of the papers for the loan of an OFW-applicant can be done in one day as long as the requirements needed are complete.
Interested applicant may visit the Office of the Governor, 2nd Floor of the Provincial Capitol Building and look for Program –In- Charge Carmencita W. Magalong, and present the following requirements: work contract for working abroad, visa for country destination, filled-up Provincial Overseas Employment Program application form with one copy of 2×2 passport size ID picture, Certificate of Net Take Home of co-makers to be provided by the Office of the Provincial Accountant.
Also, an applicant must be willing to sign a Promissory Note, Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) and other documents related to the loan.
To ensure the effective implementation of the program, an applicant must have at least two qualified co-makers who are permanent employees of the Provincial Government of Mountain Province. They will enter into a MOA with the provincial government represented by the governor.
Under the MOA, the co-makers as the guarantors of the borrower for the payment of the loan agree that the obligation shall be deducted from their monthly salary for a period of 12 months or until the loan shall have been fully paid if the borrower fails to pay his/ her obligation.
Since its inception in 2011, the program was able to cater to 282 individuals who are now working as nurses, domestic helpers, factory workers, drivers and skilled workers in Hongkong, Cyprus, Taiwan, Kuwait, Dubai, Korea, Saudi Arabia, Russia, Canada, Poland, Libya, Hawai, Singapore, United States of America, Japan, Malaysia, New Zealand, Europe and Germany. Of the total, 235 are females and 47 are males.
Governor Bonifacio C. Lacwasan, Jr., said that the loan program would ease the financial burden of the OFWs from the province when they work abroad because of the very minimal loan interest instead of availing loan to agencies with a very high interest.
It can be recalled that a seed money of three million pesos was allotted in 2011 for this program.
Administrative Officer V Crisanta P. Juan of the Office of the Provincial Accountant explained that the provincial government still has 1.2 million pesos to be loaned out to OFW-applicants for this year since it is a revolving fund. To sustain the program, the remaining balance of a prior year or the unused amount and the loan amortizations to be paid by all OFW- beneficiaries will be used for the same program in the ensuing years.
By Alpine L. Killa