The state-owned Development Bank of the Philippines (DBP) has authorized P8.5 billion in financial assistance for the rehabilitation efforts of both public and private institutions impacted by the present public health crisis, a senior official said.

DBP President and Chief Executive Officer Emmanuel G. Herbosa, in an issued statement, said their Rehabilitation Support Program on Severe Events (RESPONSE) and its sub-program DBP RESPONSE to Accelerate Micro-Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME) Recovery helped 90 companies in the first six months of the year.

“The DBP RESPONSE will continue to be the bank’s centerpiece program to encourage private businesses and public institutions to rebuild, rehabilitate, recover, and resume operations, thereby boosting the government’s national recovery program,” Herbosa said.

DBP is the fifth-largest bank in the country in terms of assets and provides credit support to four strategic sectors of the economy – infrastructure and logistics; micro, small and medium enterprises; environment; social services, and community development.

The DBP RESPONSE also provides rehabilitation financing support to DBP and non-DBP borrowers stricken by calamities and/or force majeure events including typhoons, floods, drought, pest, and disease infestations, earthquakes, peace and order problems, and other similar events resulting in significant socio-economic damages.

Herbosa said under the DBP RESPONSE, 30 borrowers have been granted new loans totaling almost P4.8-billion with the majority located in Luzon and engaged in the accommodation and foodservice industries, wholesale and retail trade, public administration and defense, manufacturing, financial and insurance activities, and other service activities.

He said the program caters to private institutions including enterprises, corporations, cooperatives, associations, schools, hospitals, and financial institutions as well as local government units (LGUs) and government corporations such as water districts, state universities, and colleges.

“DBP RESPONSE offers a longer repayment period of up to 15 years, inclusive of a three-year grace period, for public borrowers and up to 10 years with a three-year grace period for private institutions,” Herbosa said. 

The DBP RESPONSE – MSME RECOVERY sub-program offers low interest and flexible terms to duly registered medium enterprises, including start-ups and cooperatives engaged in agri-fishery and non-essential businesses. It also covers wholesale lending to rural banks, thrift banks, microfinance-oriented banks, and non-bank financial institutions including cooperatives and microfinance institutions, for lending to MSME borrowers.

He said under the DBP RESPONSE – MSME RECOVERY, 60 borrowers have availed of funding assistance amounting to P3.7-billion, with 24 projects located in Mindanao, 21 in the Visayas, and 15 in Luzon that included firms engaged in wholesale and retail trade; financial and insurance activities; agriculture, forestry and fishing; and accommodation and foodservice industries.

He said local businesses, LGUs, and other government entities should avail of the opportunity to future-proof their operations and enhance resiliency as the country girds for post-pandemic recovery.

“DBP is poised to provide the strategic assistance to our development partners in the business community and to fellow government institutions as they improve current systems and boost continuity programs to mitigate the impact of future crisis situations,” Herbosa said.