DAR-12 grants Php48M to ARBOs in Sultan Kudarat

October 23, 2015 5:55 am 

ISULAN, Sultan Kudarat, Oct. 22 -– In anticipation of the El Nino phenomenon expected to hit Mindanao later this year, the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) in Region 12 has approved a Php48,342,200.00 credit line through Land Bank of the Philippines (LBP) to 28 agrarian reform beneficiary organizations (ARBOs) in Sultan Kudarat province.

The amount would be utilized to finance rice and corn production in Sultan Kudarat, a leading rice and corn producer in South Central Mindanao region.

Rodolfo Alburo, Sultan Kudarat agrarian reform officer, said the approved credit lines are granted under the Agrarian Production Credit Program (APCP).

A joint project of DAR and LBP, the credit program aims to achieve sustainable crop production and increase household income of ARBs by providing them capital for farm inputs.

“The credit line for each ARBO varies. One is according to the number of ARB members and the other based on the number of hectares applied for each organization,” Alburo said.

As of Thursday, Alburo said 19 ARBOs had received a total amount of Php25,691,766.66 while the remaining nine farmer organizations are awaiting their checks.

In 2014, five ARBOs in Sultan Kudarat’s 10 municipalities and one city have received financing under the APCP amounting to Php11,168,485.00, Alburo said.

The APCP program was first implemented during the last quarter of 2014.

Iglecerio Catiil, LBP APCP provincial account officer, said under the APCP program, ARBOs are given 150-180 days to pay LBP at 8.5 percent interest per annum with an interest rebate of 2 percent if payment is made on time.

Catiil explained to ARBOs that the LBP loan interest is way below as compared to the interest imposed by private traders that usually go to as high as 10 percent.

Catiil said APCP has a built-in insurance plan for the members and their immediate families in case of accidents or death. The insurance also covers crops damaged by typhoons or calamities.

Rodel Palmares, a member of KM 14 HVC Farmers Association, Inc. in Bagumbayan town, said the DAR program was a blessing to farmers like him.

”I used to borrow money from private traders or middlemen but the rate was too high. At one point, I have to sell part of my farm lot to be able to pay my loan,” he said. (PNA)

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