ACEF Will Be Given As Grant, No Longer As Loan

The Agricultural Competitiveness Enhance Fund (ACEF) which has a P3.5 billion fund will no longer be given out to beneficiaries as interest-free loan. Because of very sad experience in the past that borrowers don’t pay their loans, the government has seen it fit that the fund might as well be given to beneficiaries as a grant which does not have to be paid back.

This was learned from. Sen Cynthia Villar during the AANI Farm Tour that visited the livelihood projects of the Villar Sipag foundation. Sen. Villar is the chairman of the Senate Committee on Agriculture and Food.

The grant will be given not in the form of cash but in the form of machinery and equipment that will enable groups of farmers, members of farmers’ cooperatives or associations to add value to their harvests. These could include postharvest machineries, processing equipment, blast freezing equipment, cold storage facilities and the like.

Mrs. Villar said that the guidelines are currently being threshed out. The implementing rules and regulations should be finalized within a few months.

Of the P3.5 billion ACEF, 10 percent will be allotted to scholarships, 20 percent to R&D, and 70 percent to grants.

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