China-manufactured vaccines for the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19)
will likely be the first to arrive in the country this month, Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque said on Tuesday.
The Philippines is also expecting Covid-19 vaccines from other suppliers like the COVAX worldwide supply pool of the World Health Organization.
Roque said Sinovac Biotech of China has committed 25 million doses of its Covid-19 vaccine for the Philippines. This is on top of the 600,000 doses that Sinovac has committed to donate to the Philippines also this month.
However, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has yet to approve Sinovac’s application for emergency use authority.
Philippine Ambassador to China Jose Santiago Sta. Romana has assured that the Asian neighbor could deliver its Covid-19 vaccines to the country and is ramping up vaccine production to supply internationally.
“An advantage of the Philippines is it’s pretty high up [on China’s] priority list [of] supplying vaccines,” Sta. Romana said, adding that China has vaccinated about 40 million people, including Filipinos in the country.
The Philippines is supposed to start receiving its first batch of Covid-19 vaccines from China, Pfizer, AstraZeneca and COVAX. However, there are reports that Western countries have already cornered up to 90 percent of the Covid-19 vaccine supplies from pharmaceutical companies in the United States and United Kingdom. SOVEREIGNPH