Land-based Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) who went home to the country as a result of the Coronavirus pandemic and would like to establish their own business may borrow funds from the government.
The Department of Trade and Industries implements the loan assistance program dubbed as ‘Helping the Economy Recover Through OW Enterprise Start-Up (HEROES)’ through the Small Business Corporation for non-professional land-based OFWs faced with limited employment opportunities.
The said program is a component of the COVID-19 Assistance to Restart Enterprises (CARES) with an allocation of P100 million.
Qualified OFWs may take a loan from the program with an amount ranging from P10,000 to P100,000, with zero interest, and will entail a service fee, the amount of which will depend on the terms of payment.
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Loans that will be paid in 24 months will have a service of six percent, while those with repayment terms of up to 36 months will have an eight percent service fee.
Interested OFW will need to apply through the SBCorp On-Line Portal dedicated to the HEROES Program. They will present a video pitch on their business proposal to justify the loan application, which includes, but not limited to, product or service design, costing, inventory plan, potential market, and projected sales.
All borrowers also need to submit documentary requirements such as fully-accomplished Loan Application Form, one government-issued ID with picture, and a certification from the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration or any proof of repatriation.
Those who will take out a loan that amounts from P10,000 to P50,000 will also need to present a DTI registration, while those who will borrow more than P50,000 and up to P100,000 will need to present an additional Mayor’s or Municipal Business Permit.
The DTI reminds borrowers and would-be borrowers under the CARES program that paying the loan on time according to the amortization schedule will ensure that more micro and small enterprises can continuously benefit from the program.
Non-payment of the loan will result in legal action by SB Corporation and registering a negative credit track record.