Ayala-Led BPI to Launch Country’s First 'CARE' Bonds to Help MSMEs During Pandemic
The Ayala family’s Bank of the Philippine Islands (BPI) is launching the country’s first COVID Action Response Bonds (CARE Bonds) to raise funds in support of local micro, small, and medium businesses (MSMEs) hit hard by the global pandemic.
In a public disclosure on the stock exchange, BPI announced that the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has confirmed that the CARE Bonds qualify as “Social Bonds” under the ASEAN Social Bonds Standards in the Philippines.
Proceeds of the planned issuance will be used toward getting MSMEs back on their feet under BPI’s new Sustainable Funding Framework. In the last few months, over 2,000 local businesses have already shut down as a result of the pandemic, as per the Department of Labor and Employment.
“MSMEs account for a relatively small percentage of total bank borrowings but a very large percentage of total nationwide employment. Loans to MSMEs go a long way to keeping Filipinos working. To support MSMEs is to embrace the Bayanihan spirit,” said BPI President and CEO Cezar P. Consing.
BPI has not yet announced how much they intend to raise.