As part of its continuing support to Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs), the Land Bank of the Philippines (LANDBANK) has approved loans worth P1.89 billion for 1,297 borrowers under the OFW Reintegration Program (OFW-RP) since its launch on May
2011. Of this amount, P1.84 billion has been released as of end-May 2021.
Jointly implemented with the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA), the facility offers credit assistance to OFWs to pursue business opportunities as an alternative to overseas employment. The Bank has earmarked P1 billion for the said Program.
LANDBANK said that loan applications under the OFW Program increased steadily since the COVID-19 outbreak, with total approved loans reaching P219 million for 176 borrowers from March 15, 2020 to May 31, 2021.
“We understand the financial difficulties being faced by many OFWs due to the ongoing pandemic that has affected overseas deployments. Through the OFW Reintegration Program, LANDBANK is closely working with OWWA in supporting OFWs to acquire their own businesses as an alternative source of income,” said LANDBANK President and CEO Cecilia C. Borromeo.
Under the OFW-RP, eligible OFWs may avail of loans for working capital or acquisition of fixed assets at a minimum amount of P100,000 and up to P2 million for a single proprietor borrower, and P5 million for a group of OFW borrowers, with a fixed interest rate of 7.5% per annum.
The short-term loans under the Program are payable up to one (1) year, while the tenor for term loans shall be based on cash flow but not to exceed seven (7) years, inclusive of a maximum two (2) years grace period on the principal.
Aside from providing access to credit, LANDBANK has also been supporting OFWs by facilitating the efficient delivery of financial support under the social amelioration programs of the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE).
As of May 28, 2021, LANDBANK has transferred a total of P3.06 billion to DOLE’s regional accounts for distribution to beneficiaries under the Department’s Abot Kamay ang Pagtulong (AKAP) for OFWs Program and the Tabang OFW Program.
At the same time, the Overseas Filipino Bank (OFBank) was launched on June 29, 2020, to provide a safe, convenient and responsive banking experience to OFWs and their beneficiaries. A wholly owned subsidiary of LANDBANK, the OFBank is officially the first branchless digital-only bank in the country after securing a digital banking license from the Monetary Board (MB) of the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) on March 25, 2021.
As of May 31, 2021, a total of 37,199 accounts were opened through the OFBank’s Digital On-Boarding System with Artificial Intelligence (DOBS-AI), which allows OFWs and Filipinos residing overseas to open a mobile banking deposit account online through their mobile devices.
Interested borrowers for the OFW Reintegration Program may contact the nearest open LANDBANK Lending Center or Branch nationwide or call LANDBANK’s customer service at (02) 8-405-7000 or at PLDT Domestic Toll Free 1-800-10-405-7000.
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