Five to eight million doses of AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccines could arrive in the Philippines by late February or early March, an adviser to the president said Wednesday.
This first tranche will go to the national government from the COVAX facility, and is different from the 17 million doses ordered by the private sector and some local government units, presidential adviser for entrepreneurship Joey Concepcion told Teleradyo.
"Sa COVAX, lahat yan sa government. Sa 17 million, about six million of that ay sa private sector..yung mga nine million na balanse, para sa LGUs yun," he said.
The first batch of 17 million doses ordered through tripartite agreements will likely arrive mid-2021 followed by a second batch around third quarter, he said.
The British drugmaker pledged not to profit from its COVID vaccines for the year 2021, hence its relatively cheaper price, which made it appealing to the private sector.
Of the six million that will go to the private sector, half will be donated to government, for use on medical frontliners, Concepcion said.
The remaining half will be distributed among companies, which they will all provide to employees for free.
More COVID-19 vaccines from other drugmakers such as Novavax and Moderna are expected should negotiations push through.
"Binili namin, dinonate namin, so walang babayaran ang government. Pati mga empleyado rin, walang babayaran," he said.