Mon. Oct 18th, 2021
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The Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PCCI) has asked the national government to allow the private sector to directly procure coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) vaccines from accredited sources.

PCCI made the statement Wednesday in its intent to help the government to speed up the rollout of the vaccine program.

“We urge (the) government to allow the private sector to import vaccines without restrictions or conditions so we could move quickly and efficiently in vaccinating more people,” PCCI president Benedicto Yujuico said.

Yujuico said the inoculation program should be accelerated amid the rising Covid-19 cases “to ensure the safety of our workers and people, improve consumer confidence and hasten the recovery of our economy”.

He added the country could not afford another lockdown as this will be fatal to economic recovery.

“We have to keep pace with our neighbors, which except for Indonesia, have lower infection rates than us and yet are ahead of us, including Indonesia, in implementing the vaccination program. We cannot risk being left behind again and revert to being the ‘basket case’ of Asia,” Yujuico said.

The PCCI has also called on the Food and Drug Administration to fast-track the review of applications for emergency use authorization for the Covid-19 vaccines.

Earlier, the National Task Force Against Covid-19 said only the government can procure the coronavirus vaccines.

Since the Covid-19 vaccines are not yet for commercial use globally, vaccine makers only deal with the government for the procurement of the vaccines. SOVEREIGNPH

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