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Philippines signs supply deal with Moderna for 20 million doses

The Philippine government has signed a supply agreement with US vaccine maker Moderna covering 20 million doses, vaccine czar Carlito Galvez Jr announced on Friday, March 19.

“Yesterday, we signed a supply agreement with Moderna. We have a tripartite agreement with ICTSI, Ayala Group, and also the private sector,” said Galvez during a virtual Malacañang press briefing.

The signed agreement covers the government contract for 13 million doses and the private sector contract for 7 million doses.

Galvez thanked ICTSI president Enrique Razon Jr in particular for contributing to the deal’s finalization. 

Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine has not yet been issued Emergency Use Authorization by the Philippine Food and Drug Administration. But because it has been approved by mature regulatory agencies like the United States FDA, the chances of the quick issuance of a Philippine EUA are high.

More vaccines being secured

Galvez also gave updates on how the government is securing more vaccines.

Apart from one million doses of Sinovac vaccine expected this month and 979,200 doses of AstraZeneca expected this month or early April, the government is working on the following orders:

  • April - arrival 3 million doses of Sputnik V and 2 million doses of Sinovac vaccine
  • May - arrival of 2 million doses of Sinovac vaccine, 2.6 milion AstraZeneca doses secured by private sector

Considering all these efforts, Galvez said vaccinations of the elderly may happen in April or May. The elderly are the second priority of the vaccination campaign, after the country’s 1.8 million healthcare workers. 

Galvez also expects the country to have a “stockpile” of 4 million doses by April.

President Rodrigo Duterte has said that he would further reopen the economy if the country has deployed a significant number of vaccines. – Rappler.com

Pia Ranada

Pia Ranada covers the Office of the President and Bangsamoro regional issues for Rappler. While helping out with desk duties, she also watches the environment sector and the local government of Quezon City. For tips or story suggestions, you can reach her at pia.ranada@rappler.com.

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