The Philippines' richest have pooled some P800 million enough to buy over 3 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines from British drugmaker AstraZeneca, one of the contributors said Monday as nations rush to secure supplies.
JG Summit CEO Lance Gokongwei said at least half of the vaccines would be turned over to the Department of Health for distribution.
"I think as of this date, lampas three million doses na so mga $16 million. That's about P800 million po na contribution ng buong private sector," Gokongwei said during a guesting at the Malacañang press briefing.
Last month, Gokongwei was among businessmen who joined a tripartite deal between the private sector, the government, and AstraZeneca for the purchase of COVID-19 vaccines.
Other businessmen who joined the initiative are Ayala Corp's Jaime Augusto Zobel de Ayala, port magnate Enrique Razon, taipan Lucio Tan, San Miguel Boss Ramon Ang, and the children of late SM shopping mall tycoon Henry Sy Sr.
At the time of the signing of the deal, tycoons have pooled enough funds to purchase some 2.6 million doses of vaccines.
"As part of the private sector we recognize that we are all part of an interlinked society
Dapat walang turuan, walang iwanan, walang kanya-kanya," Gokongwei said.
The JG Summit boss also assured employees of the private sector that businessmen are working to secure COVID-19 vaccines for them and their families.
"I think priority is to support PRD's (President Rodrigo Duterte) concern for vulnerable parts of society so we go from there. The private sector, aside from supporting the government in its role, we also want to prioritize our own employees to assure our employees and their families na their health is our concern," Gokongwei said.
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