Davao-based businessman Dennis Uy recently made headlines once again as reports say that he eyes for a huge amount of loan worth P700 million through his company Chelsea Logistics.

Alarmed by this development, Bayan Muna chairman Neri Colmenares reminded local credit agency Philippine Guarantee Corporation (PhilGuarantee) that it should prioritize farmers as well as small and medium enterprises (SMEs) over big businesses.

“We warn PhilGuarantee against giving sovereign guarantee to big business at the expense of farmers, SMEs, and public housing who need these funds the most,” Colmenares said on Monday.

He added that PhilGuarantee should grant guarantees based on merits and not on the closeness of the applicant to President Rodrigo Duterte. Uy financially supported Duterte’s presidential campaign in 2016.

Colmenares also asked PhilGuarantee to reveal a list of businesses that received guarantees under the current administration, including those got by Uy.

Financial observers noticed the rapid growth of Uy’s business interest and wealth during Duterte’s term. In 2019, the Udenna Corporation’s CEO, chairman, and founder debuted in Forbes list of 50 richest people in the Philippines, ranking 22 with $660 million net worth.

In November, Udenna bought almost half of American petroleum giant Chevron’s Malampaya stake. In the following month, PH Resorts Group Holdings Inc., another company led by Uy, expressed its interest in bidding for the Balicasag Island Drive Resort project. The businessman also involved himself in the creation of a third telco player.

“If Chelsea Logistics will indeed apply for sovereign guarantee we will definitely oppose PhilGHuarantee’s approval of such move,” Colmenares warned, reminding that they have filed cases against the Department of Finance (DOF) for extending sovereign loans to big businesses. PhilGuarantee is an agency connected to DOF.

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