LandBank
In his fourth State of the Nation Address, Duterte said LandBank is “mired in so many commercial transactions” that it supposedly forgot about its mandate of spurring countryside development by helping farmers.
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'Number 1 commercial bank’: Duterte threatens to shut down LandBank
Ian Nicolas Cigaral (Philstar.com) - July 23, 2019 - 12:13pm

MANILA, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte on Monday threatened to abolish the Land Bank of the Philippines, saying the state-run lender is not giving enough credit assistance to farmers.

In his fourth State of the Nation Address, Duterte said LandBank is “mired in so many commercial transactions” that it supposedly forgot about its mandate of spurring countryside development by helping farmers.

“You know, you are called Land Bank but you are now the number one commercial bank in the Philippines. What the heck is happening to you? You are supposed to finance agricultural enterprises and endeavours,” Duterte said.

“Go back to where you were created for and that is to help the farmers... You better decide on that, I will give you until the end of July to give me a plan or else I will ask Congress to reconfigure you what-not,” he added.

“I'm asking now Congress, if there is no viable plan for that for the farmers and it is just all commercial transactions, might as well abolish it and give the money to the congressmen for their development funds,” he continued.

Central bank data shows LandBank is the country’s third largest bank in terms of assets as of March 31 this year.

In the first quarter, the state-controlled bank’s net income stood at P4.75 billion, up 12% from P4.26 billion in the same period last year, it said in a statement. That was also 14% higher than the lender’s first-quarter income target of P4.16 billion.

LandBank’s support for its priority sector grew 12% from January to March this year, with outstanding loans to small farmers and fishers and their associations amounting to P45.3 billion.

For the first three months of the year, Landbank released P13 billion in loans to the sector, benefiting 128,496 small farmers and fishers nationwide.

Loans for agriculture and fisheries also rose by 19% to P172 billion, including agribusiness loans which grew by 29% to P114 billion. — With a report from The STAR/Louise Maureen Simeon

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