January 17, 2021
Malacanang is not aware yet of the brand of vaccine for coronavirus disease that China will donate to the Philippines, an official said on Sunday.
In a radio interview, Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said that in the agreement signed between the Philippines and China, it was not specifically mentioned the vaccine that will be approved for emergency use authorization (EUA).
“In the agreement, it was not specified… (it) depends on what will be approved for EUA because Sinopharm and Sinovac are both state-owned,” Roque said referring to two Chinese pharmaceutical companies that produce COVID-19 vaccines.
He said the donated 500,000 doses will be part of the over 20 million doses of vaccines that the country has already secured.
“It is included in the 23 million. Meaning, we don’t need to pay the 500,000 (doses) from 23 million that we ordered so we just need to pay 22,5000,000,” the official said.
On Saturday, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi, who visited Manila, informed Foreign Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr. in their bilateral meeting that Beijing intended to donate 500,000 COVID-19 vaccines.
Locsin thanked Wang for China’s assistance to the Philippines’ public health response since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic "by way of in-kind and equipment donation, as well as the sharing of best practices and know-how through medical experts."
Locsin and Wang met in Taguig City, highlighting a two-day official visit by the latter that began on January 15. Ella Dionisio/DMS
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