Duterte Explains Vaccine Prices: 'It's Supply and Demand'

Market forces are at work.
Photo/s: Simeon Celi/Presidential Photo

How are COVID-19 vaccines priced? President Rodrigo Duterte said it's based on the fundamental law of supply and demand, as the country's stockpiling of jabs comes under close scrutiny.

Vaccine orders are covered by confidentiality agreements and prices are negotiated, Duterte said in his weekly address to the nation.

"Law of supply and demand," Duterte said. "Pag madaming isda, mura yan. Pag limitado isda, mahal."


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"Ganito ang bakuna. The earliest we can have it is about two months from now," he said.

Supply deals that are being negotiated are "clean," said Sec. Carlito Galvez, the country's vaccine czar. All procurements are at "almost no profit" to the manufacturers, he said.

Earlier Monday, Galvez told a House of Representatives hearing that the country was pursuing a portfolio strategy of multiple vaccine brands. The latest order that could be finalized is for 20 million doses from America's Moderna, he said.

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