MANILA — The government has ordered 10 million more COVID-19 shots from China's Sinovac Biotech, the Philippines' top supplier of coronavirus vaccines, an official leading the inoculation drive said on Tuesday.
The country has received and almost used up 26 million Sinovac jabs, said vaccine "czar" Carlito Galvez Jr.
"Para po talaga ensure na steady ang supply... ‘yong ating negotiating team, nag-sign po ng purchase order for additional 10 million doses of Sinovac," he said in a taped meeting with President Rodrigo Duterte.
(To ensure a steady supply, our negotiating team signed a purchase order for additional 10 million doses of Sinovac.)
"Ito po ay mababa po ang presyo kaysa sa original price niya. Ang nakikita po natin ay talagang medyo gumaganda po ang ano po natin ngayon sa Sinovac, maganda po ang supply niya, steady."
(The price of these is lower than its original price. We see that the supply from Sinovac is improving, steady.)
Authorities have also negotiated with US biotech firm Pfizer to deliver some 5 million doses of its COVID-19 vaccine this September, Galvez said.
Government expects to take delivery of 20 to 25 million coronavirus shots next month, Galvez, chief implementer of the National Task Force on COVID-19, earlier said.
The Philippines is fighting a spike in coronavirus cases linked to community transmission of the highly contagious COVID-19 Delta variant.
Authorities aim to inoculate up to 70 million people before the year ends to achieve herd immunity and safely reopen the economy. At least 13.1 million people have been fully vaccinated so far.