MAKATI CITY – The Credit Information Corporation (CIC), the country’s sole public credit registry and repository of credit information, supports the Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprise Development (MSMED) Council, through the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), in the celebration of the National MSME Week 2021 from August 2 to 6 with the theme, “Makabagong MSMEs, Bagong Pag-asa Laban sa Pandemya.”
Through its advisory role to the MSMED Council and as a member of the MSMED Committee on Access to Finance, the CIC is one with the National Government in the implementation of various stimulus strategies and reforms that will help small businesses become resilient and recover faster from the devastating effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.
CIC President and CEO Atty. Ben Joshua Baltazar emphasized the importance of the CIC database in helping MSMEs cope with the financial challenges of their business during and even beyond this unprecedented crisis.
“From 9 million data subjects in 2019, the CIC database now has the credit data of 28 million Filipino borrowers. Among these, 96,000 are companies or sole proprietors which are overwhelmingly comprised of MSMEs. They can receive a score from our Special Accessing Entities which are credit bureaus who have access to the CIC database,” the CIC PCEO shared.
Two of CIC’s accredited credit bureaus—CRIF Philippines and CIBI Information Inc.—offer MSME credit scoring for their clients— which range from established entities such as universal and commercial banks and lending and financing companies, to even the smaller, development lenders such as rural banks, cooperatives, and microfinance institutions (MFIs) where most MSMEs rely on for capital.
He further added how the demand for the CIC Credit Reports has steadily increased since last year: “From 400,000 credit reports accessed by lenders for the entire 2020, a total of 437,000 credit reports are already consumed by accessing entities for their credit-decisioning activities for the first half of 2021 alone.”
The PCEO likewise cited the significance of CIC’s directive to submitting financial institutions to refrain from tagging missed or partial payments of loans as defaults or delinquent to implement the grace period provisions of the Bayanihan to Heal as One Act in 2020.
“Because the CIC Credit Report should not reflect missed payments during the legally mandated grace periods, individuals and MSMEs are given the opportunity to be assessed fairly when availing loans and credit services to start, sustain, or expand their business,” he further explained.
In case the credit reports of MSMEs reflect their missed payments during the pandemic grace periods or other erroneous information—which can affect their credit standing—they can file a dispute online through the CIC’s Online Dispute Resolution Process (ODRP) to have their credit information corrected.
“All of these illustrate how CIC data can benefit MSMEs and startups in line with the Updated Philippine Development Plan 2017-2022 directive to expand MSME access to economic opportunities,” the PCEO ended.
The Credit Information Corporation (CIC), a government-owned and controlled corporation, was created by Republic Act No. 9510, otherwise known as the Credit Information System Act (CISA). The primary mandate of CIC is to establish a comprehensive and centralized credit information system for the collection and dissemination of fair and accurate information relevant to, or arising from, credit and credit-related activities of all entities participating in the ecosystem.