Davao City helps SMEs with financing difficulties

DAVAO CITY (MindaNews/24 July) –Small and medium enterprises in Davao City have a hard time to gain access to financing, a study showed.

Half of the SMEs want to access financing but only a fifth were able to borrow from banks, according to the Philippine Cities Competitiveness Ranking Project (PCCRP) 2009 study conducted by the Asian Institute of Management (AIM).

“It’s simply because we have less rural banks here in Davao City and most of our banks here are big banks,” said Roberto Alabado III, City Planning and Development Office chief, when ask to comment on the result of the study.

Though the She’s find it burdensome to gain credit lines from the banks, according to Alabado, the city government is providing them an easy financing access.

“We have a financial scheme in the city where the SMEs can avail financing aids through the cooperatives,” he said.

He said the city government is backing the SMEs, which became evident when AIM recognized Davao City as the most friendly city to the micro-small-medium enterprise.

The City Cooperatives Development Office has granted financial loans to 40 organizations through the Rural Small Medium Enterprise support program.

Under the program, the SMEs engaged in agricultural products can avail of up to P200,000 loan  while those in food processing, marketing business and consumer stores is limited to P100,000 assistance.

“It’s payable in three years without interest,” said Obaldo Nuez, Development and Management Division chief of the City Cooperative Office.

“If we want a business-driven economy, money should be reachable,” the AIM executive said in a newspaper report.

The AIM Policy Center surveyed SMEs in 29 key cities nationwide from September last year to January this year.

Under the Davao City Chamber of Commerce & Industries, Inc. (DCCCII), the SME Center in Davao City extends various services to provide assistance for the development of the small and medium-scale enterprises in Davao City.

“Its vision is to become a self-sustaining and institutionalized center that provides basic services and support to the SMEs in the city,” DCCCII said. (Rico Biliran/MindaNews)