STATE-OWNED Land Bank of the Philippines (LANDBANK) will launch an agricultural-hub in Bongabong, Oriental Mindoro to provide more farmers and fishers with easier access to financial assistance.  

The construction of the agri-hub is set to commence this month and is expected to be inaugurated in late December. There are currently 10 existing agri-hubs nationwide.  

We hope to generate more economic opportunities and activities in the municipality and nearby areas,LANDBANK President and CEO Cecilia C. Borromeo said in a statement.  

The hub is projected to serve around 12,233 farmers and fishers in the municipality. It will also deliver banking services to public and private clients of the bank, including 5,360 beneficiaries of the national governments conditional and unconditional cash transfer programs.  

The facility will be equipped with various digital banking platforms, including the Digital Onboarding System (DOBS).  

In a separate press release, LANDBANK announced that as of Aug. 31, it released a total of P8.1 billion in loans to over 35,500 borrowers under the Agricultural Competitiveness Enhancement Fund (ACEF) Lending Program.  

Under the ACEF, the state-run bank provides credit assistance for farm inputs and acquisition of agricultural fixed assets. The loanable amount for individual farmers and fishers is up to P1 million; while cooperatives, associations, and micro and small enterprises may borrow up to P5 million.  

The bank also implements the Expanded Rice Credit Assistance under the Rice Competitiveness Enhancement Fund, which aims to help increase the productivity, efficiency and profitability of rice farmers and their cooperatives. Eligible program borrowers may avail of up to 90% of their total project cost. Luisa Maria Jacinta C. Jocson