WITH a low utilization rate of the Baguio Revitalization Actions for a Vibrant Economy–Economic Stimulus Package (BRAVE-ESP) financial assistance for the city’s micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs), the city has instead realigned some P60 million of the funding for the BRAVE-ESP towards the acquisition of vaccines for the city’s residents.
Earlier in the year, some P100 million worth of loan assistance was made available for 2,000 businesses in the city of Baguio that were negatively affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
However, only 192 MSMEs out of the 2,000 targeted availed of the fund totaling to some P7.16 million worth of funding.
With the under utilization of the stimulus loans, the city has deemed fit to reduce the allotment for the BRAVE-ESP program from P100 million to P40 million.
Under the BRAVE-ESP, small enterprises are allowed to avail of a maximum of P30,000 while medium enterprises are allowed to borrow some P50,000 payable in a maximum of 24 months with a service charge of six percent.
According to City Treasurer Alex Cabarrubias, the problem with the BRAVE-ESP program has not been the availability of funds; rather, it is the stringent requirements to qualify for taking the loans under the program.
Previously, the city government announced that it would look into easing the requirements and conditions to qualify for the loans to make them more accessible to more MSMEs in the city.