PH not having ‘trouble’ with securing COVID-19 vaccines, despite being a developing nation

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Malacañang assured Filipinos that the Philippines will not be beaten out from the list of countries trying to secure COVID-19 vaccines even as rich nations continue to hoard supplies.

“Hindi tayo nahihirapan, kaya lang ang katotothanan pero ang mas mayayamang bansa, kinokorner ang supply. Pero mayroon tayong pamamaraan,” Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said.

[The truth is rich countries are cornering the supply. But we have found ways, we are not having trouble with it.]

To prove that the country is doing its negotiation well, Roque cited the closing of deals with Sinovac and Pfizer, including the tripartite deal to secure 2.6 million shots of AstraZeneca’s vaccine.

Specifics such as doses of vaccine from Sinovac and Pfizer that have been pre-purchased or how much the country is spending for them were not shared by the spokesman due to non-disclosure agreements signed by the parties.

The government is targeting the vaccination of at least 60 million Filipinos in the next three to five years. ₱72.5 B of public funds were allocated for COVID-19 vaccines in the ratified 2021 national budget, which is more than enough to purchase the necessary doses according to Roque.