US reiterates support for ASEAN's fight vs. COVID-19

Willard Cheng, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Dec 08 2021 01:56 PM

MANILA -- The United States reiterated its support for the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) in combating the COVID-19 pandemic.

Meeting with the 10 ambassadors from members of ASEAN in the United States, US Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman reiterated the United States' commitment to fighting the pandemic.

She also said the US continues to be ASEAN's partner in addressing regional challenges, including freedom of navigation in the South and East China Seas and restoring Myanmar’s “path toward democracy.”

Philippine Ambassador to the US Jose Manuel Romualdez represented the Philippines in the meeting.

The US has so far donated 40 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines to the Philippines.

The Philippines has so far received more than P1.9 billion ($39 million) worth of assistance from the United States for its COVID-19 response. 

Aside from vaccines, the US also gave medical equipment, personal protective equipment, and other forms of support during the pandemic. 

The largest single contributor to Gavi’s COVAX Advance Market Commitment, the United States has donated $4 billion to COVAX.

“The Deputy Secretary shared that the President’s October announcement of intent to provide more than $100 million in new funding for U.S.-ASEAN Futures initiatives reflects the Biden-Harris Administration’s deep commitment to ASEAN’s central role in preserving a free and open Indo-Pacific,” the US State Department said in a statement.

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