DBP approves P38.28B in credit for local gov’t units

DEVELOPMENT BANK of the Philippines (DBP) approved P38.28 billion in credit for more than 100 local government units (LGUs) for the first six months of 2021.

The state-run lender’s funding will support infrastructure and socioeconomic development initiatives in 110 LGUs, DBP said in a statement on Thursday.

These loans are under the Assistance for Economic and Social Development (ASENSO) for LGUs financing program, which is designed to aid them in their recovery from the effects of the pandemic, especially those in the countryside.

“We have fast-tracked the provision of credit assistance to all levels of local governments as they scale up social and economic interventions,’’ DBP President Emmanuel G. Herbosa said. “We are also helping the LGU sector boost their resiliency against future economic downturns.”

Launched last year, the ASENSO program has helped fund infrastructure, housing, sanitation, telecommunications, and disaster management programs in 51 Luzon LGUs, along with 40 in Mindanao and 19 in the Visayas.

Mr. Herbosa said DBP extended P330 million in interest subsidies to 80 local government borrowers in the first half.

The DBP last year put up a P1-billion interest rate subsidy program for loans taken out by LGUs to help them finance their relief programs and recovery measures

The interest rate subsidy is offered on a first-come, first-served basis.

DBP is working with the Department of Finance, state regulators and multilateral banks to set up a credit rating system for LGUs by next year to encourage local governments to issue bonds to fund development projects. — J.P. Ibañez