October 5, 2021

Small businesses in Ilocos Norte may get a zero-interest loan.

The government of Ilocos Norte continues to bolster its economic rehabilitation program, this time concentrating on small enterprises.

The provincial government’s micro, small and medium enterprise office (MSMEO) is inviting qualified candidates to apply for another round of “zero interest” loans ranging from PHP50,000 to PHP100,000. This is part of the province’s coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) business rehabilitation programs.

On Thursday, September 16, Elma Gabriel, the MSMEO’s director, stated that applications are currently being submitted via a designated small and micro-enterprise coordinator in their respective local government units.

“Interested candidates should send their applications to sme@ilocosnorte.gov.ph if their LGUs are under lockdown. “On a first-come, first-served basis, only applicants who are able to submit full criteria will be accepted,” Gabriel said in an interview.

To be eligible for the scheme, Gabriel said a qualifying applicant must commit to repaying the loanable amount within 18 months of receiving it.

Proof of ownership of a car, equipment, or a post-dated cheque is also required as collateral.

Many micro and small businesses in the area have closed their doors for months due to mobility restrictions, hurting the region’s economy.

According to government statistics, small companies make up 98 percent of all established firms in the province, employing about 63 percent of the workforce.

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