DOF secures $800 million funding for procurement of booster shots

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jan 07 2022 05:15 PM

Residents receive their COVID-19 booster shots at the FilOil Arena as the City of San Juan resumes its vaccination for its residents on January 03, 2021. Jonathan Cellona, ABS-CBN News/File
Residents receive their COVID-19 booster shots at the FilOil Arena as the City of San Juan resumes its vaccination for its residents on January 03, 2021. Jonathan Cellona, ABS-CBN News/File

MANILA— The Department of Finance on Friday said it has secured some $800 million (P40 billion) in financing to fund the procurement of COVID-19 booster shots.

The funding was sourced from several multilateral development banks (MDBS), the DOF said in a statement. 

The DOF said it signed a $250 million loan agreement with the Asian Development Bank and another $250 million with the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) in December.

Another $300 million loan was signed with the World Bank in December, it added.
 
For the loan deals with AIIB and the ADB, the DOF is waiting for the opinion of the Department of Justice on the effectivity of the financing agreements, Finance Undersecretary Bayani Agabin said in a live televised report to President Rodrigo Duterte. 

“We expect everything, we expect (these loans) to be effective around, towards the latter part of January. So that will give us funds to purchase our COVID booster shots," said Agabin.

Meanwhile, as of Dec. 30, the Bureau of Customs was able to clear shipments of 201.44 million vaccine doses.

As of Jan. 7, a total of 210 million COVID-19 doses have arrived in the country. 

ODETTE RELIEF

Agabin said the DOF had also initiated efforts to withdraw funds from the World Bank's Disaster Risk Management Development Program with a Catastrophic Deferred Drawdown Option (CAT-DDO4) to support relief efforts and rehabilitation in the provinces hit by typhoon Odette. 

Tax filings and payments in regions under a state of calamity due to last year's strongest typhoon was also extended by the Bureau of Internal Revenue, Agabin said. 

These include: 
• Mimaropa (Mindoro-Marinduque-Romblon—Palawan)
• Western Visayas
• Central Visaya
• Eastern Visayas
• Northern Mindanao
• Caraga

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