The Philippines on Monday received its first batch of procured COVID-19 vaccines courtesy of China's Sinovac, as millions were placed back on lockdown to arrest a worrying surge in infections.
The jabs, part of the Philippines' order of 25 million doses, were received by President Rodrigo Duterte, who flew back to Manila after celebrating his birthday in his hometown Davao City on Sunday.
The one million Coronavac vaccines are the first procured jabs to arrive in the Philippines. Prior to its arrival, the country has been using donated jabs from China and global vaccine-sharing facility COVAX for its COVID-19 immunization program.
So far, the Philippines has received over 1 million donated Sinovac vaccines, and 525,600 doses of donated AstraZeneca jabs.
The Philippines aims to immunize some 70 million of its people by the end of 2021.