LIVELIHOOD From its inception in July 2007, the joint micro-finance project of Mindoro Nickel and the Victoria Rural Bank has generated some PhP3.3 million in loans as of end-2009.  Loans were extended to 192 participants and recorded a collection rate of 85%.  A feature of the micro-finance project is the “forced” savings that participants are obliged to comply; to-date, total cumulative savings of the 192 participants reached PhP453,542.00. The micro-finance project caters to the poor sector of the host municipality of Victoria.  This lending facility aims to create jobs and to support micro enterprises – such as vending, buying-and-selling, trading, variety stores, home- based food processing, cafeteria – needing modest start-up equity or enhancing the income-generating potential of existing small-scale enterprises. Mindoro Nickel maintains nurseries in the island of Mindoro for propagating high-value industrial crops and fruit tree seedlings to support medium and long-term agro-forestry livelihood development programs.  Under this program, it’’s nursery operations have produced 61,832 seedlings, of which 8,677 have been distributed and outplanted to various reforestation sites. Species include abaca, rattan, rubber, coffee, bamboo and fruit trees that grow naturally around the tenement area.  These species have been particularly selected so that Mangyans and Tagalogs can be inculcated with a deep sense of appreciation of the economic value of these forest species and ultimately help contribute to the reduction of slash-and-burn activities – thereby contributing to the long-term objective of watershed protection and conservation.
Intex Resources Philippines Inc. 2014