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Business

P127 billion fresh equity infused into Landbank

Elijah Felice Rosales - The Philippine Star

MANILA, Philippines — The Duterte administration has injected an average of P21 billion every year into government-owned Land Bank of the Philippines during its six-year term, expanding its capital mainly used for agricultural financing.

Outgoing Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III said Landbank’s capital more than doubled to P215.8 billion as of June from just P88.7 billion in 2015.

“When we assumed office, Landbank had only P88.7 billion in capital, (but) today Landbank’s capital has reached P215.8 billion, making it the second largest universal bank in the country. To give you an idea, Landbank in 2015 was some 50 years old, so all the past administrations put into Landbank roughly P1.7 billion a year,” Dominguez said.

The outgoing administration invested a total of P127.1 billion or P21.2 billion per year from 2016 to 2022, beating the combined average of P1.7 billion in annual infusion made by the previous presidencies in the past five decades.

“So that is the relationship when we say we have put in more capital in Landbank than all other administrations combined,” he added.

Dominguez said the capital infusion poured into Landbank strengthened its capacity not only as a credit line for agricultural workers, but also as a financing institution for development projects.

Landbank maintains the deposit accounts of all local government units (LGUs) nationwide, as it moves to expand its role as the largest development partner of localities.

Data showed the government owned bank has issued nearly P70 billion in loans to LGUs as of March, making it the largest lender for local projects on agriculture, health care and transport.

Dominguez said Landbank is expected to improve its capacity in serving LGUs after buying out the United Coconut Planters Bank as instructed by President Duterte.

With the acquisition, Landbank as the surviving entity has widened the number of its branches to 607 from 418.

Last Friday, the head of the Department of Finance (DOF) led the inauguration of the Davao Corporate Center of Land Bank, touted as the largest of its kind outside of Metro Manila.

The corporate center will serve as a one-stop shop that can deliver the financing needs of more than 30,000 clients in the Davao Region.

“I see this corporate center as Landbank’s investment in one of the fastest-growing regions in the country. With the infrastructure buildup in the region and the great potential the area holds, rapid growth will transpire here in the next few years,” Dominguez added.

LAND BANK OF THE PHILIPPINES

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