Cooperative taps Bank of Commerce for cash services

Posted on September 12, 2011

CAGAYAN DE ORO -- Members of the Del Monte Agrarian Reform Beneficiaries Cooperative (DEARBC) may start withdrawing their dividends and cash allowances from the Bank of Commerce’s automated teller machine (ATM) after the cooperative signed a service agreement with San Miguel’s commercial bank unit last Friday.

“Under the terms of the Payment Crediting Servicing Agreement signed with the cooperative, the bank would provide the cooperative’s member-beneficiaries with ATM (automated teller machine) cards,” said Marisol M. Tan, head of the bank’s Cagayan de Oro-Lapasan branch.

“This will enable (the cooperative’s members) to withdraw their dividends and other cash allowances anytime from an ATM machine provided by the bank at the cooperative’s head office in Camp Phillips, Manolo Fortich, Bukidnon.”

DEARBC was represented in the signing by Dennis M. Mijares, the cooperative’s president and chairman of the board, and Josue Cesar F. Simagala, vice chairman.

Alfredo T. Garcia, head of bank’s branch banking, said it was the first time the Bank of Commerce had entered into an agreement with a big group of agrarian reform beneficiaries.

DEARBC was organized on December 1, 1988 through Republic Act 6657 or the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Law, with regular employees of Del Monte Philippines, Inc. as its beneficiaries. Through a soft loan from the Land Bank of the Philippines, it acquired over 8,000 hectares of government lands owned by the National Development Corp. with the late President Corazon C. Aquino turning over to the beneficiaries the Certificate of Land Ownership Award on December 12, 1988.

It has a present membership of 9,085 and total assets totaling P326 million. Besides income from its 8,359 hectares of land rented out to Del Monte, the cooperative also operates a 300-hectare tree plantation and 54-hectare farm planted to papaya, corn, cassava and pineapple.

Bank of Commerce was established in 1991 and is a part of conglomerate San Miguel Corp. As of the first half of 2011, it had 122 branches nationwide. -- Michael D. Baños