LAND BANK of the Philippines’ (LANDBANK) outstanding loans to micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) hit P49.5 billion at end-June through more than 6,100 borrowers.

Among others, the loans were used to support the business expansion and acquisition of fixed assets of businesses, the state-run lender said in a statement on Thursday.

“LANDBANK recognizes the crucial role of MSMEs in advancing economic development and job generation. We will continue to work with various government partners to grow our loan portfolio for the sector and open more opportunities for our local entrepreneur,” LANDBANK President and Chief Executive Officer Lynette V. Ortiz said.

LANDBANK offers multiple loan programs dedicated to MSMEs and entrepreneurs, such as the Interim Rehabilitation Support to Cushion Unfavorably affected Enterprises by COVID-19  (I-RESCUE) Lending Program.

Under the program, MSMEs severely affected by the COVID-19 pandemic may avail of credit and loan assistance with more flexible terms and conditions, the lender said.

Launched in 2020, the program has since raised P60 billion as the available loanable fund to accommodate more borrowers. The program is available until the end of this year.

LANDBANK said it also offers loans to women-owned or -led MSMEs through the financing of working capital, building and facility construction or renovation related to business operations, and purchase orders from the borrower’s clients.

The state-run lender also partnered with the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration to offer loans to overseas Filipino workers for working capital and acquisition of fixed assets, among others.

LANDBANK also partnered with the Department of Science and Technology’s Technology Application and Promotion Institute to offer credit assistance to Filipino inventors, MSMEs, and large enterprises to help commercialize their new and innovative technologies.

“The Bank is likewise financing new and existing franchisees for new business ventures or expansion of existing businesses, covering funding for working capital, fixed asset acquisition, and capital expenditures,” LANDBANK said.

In the first quarter, the bank saw its net income decline by 18% to P10.8 billion from P13.2 billion in the same period last year.

LANDBANK is the second-largest bank in terms of assets at P3.12 trillion as of end-March, according to data from the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas. — Aaron Michael C. Sy