MANILA – Small Business (SB) Corp., the financing arm of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), is readying a loan program to help micro and small businesses provide employees with their 13th month pay.
“Similar to what we did last year, we see no reason to defer the 13th month pay for this year as the government stands ready to support businesses amid the pandemic. We already reached out to SB Corp. to develop a facility that will provide zero-interest loans to companies needing 13th month funding,” DTI Secretary Ramon Lopez said in a statement Tuesday.
Lopez said SB Corp. is expecting that loan amount will range between PHP50,000 to PHP200,000 to cover 13th month pay for employees of these enterprises.
The budget for this new lending facility will come from the remaining allocation under Bayanihan 2 given to DTI for its Covid-19 Assistance to Restart Enterprises (CARES) loan program.
Some PHP8 billion were allotted to continue the implementation of the zero-interest loan initiated by DTI.
But the DTI chief believes that business continuity is the key to help enterprises thrive amid the pandemic.
Lopez earlier pushed for opening of businesses at all alert levels and only adjusting the operating capacities.
“This will be a shift from the open-close-open-close system at different lockdown levels and will bring back more economic activities and jobs. This strategy will also bring better chances of meeting financial obligations as we advance the country’s vaccination rollout and move closer to a ‘new normal’,” he said.