|An illustration picture shows vials with Covid-19 Vaccine stickers attached and syringes with the logo of US pharmaceutical company Pfizer and German partner BioNTech, on November 17, 2020. (Photo by=Justin Tallis/ AFP)|
[Asia News = Reporter Reakkana] MANILA— The government on Sunday announced that it has struck a supply deal for 40 million doses of Pfizer's COVID-19 vaccine which is expected to reach the country by August. Vaccine czar Carlito Gavlez Jr. said he signed the agreement on Saturday along with Health Secretary Francisco Duque III, marking the country's biggest vaccine procurement so far this 2021, PhilStar reported.
"We are very happy to report that the government and the management of Pfizer have finally concluded our negotiations," he said in a statement. The country's vaccine rollout began in March, with 2.09 million now fully vaccinated out of the 50 to 70 million goals this year. Galvez said the 40 million doses will start by August, and the shipments will be delivered in bulk. The purchase is separate from the supply of Pfizer doses that the Philippines got from the COVAX Facility in May and this month.
He added that the drugmaker was able to commit doses as demand for the jabs eased in wealthy countries, which have vaccinated a significant number of their population. The amount for the purchase was not disclosed, but the official said it will be financed by the Asian Development Bank. The government secured a P82.5 billion funding from Congress for procuring the jabs.