(PAGASA 24-HOUR PUBLIC WEATHER FORECAST as of Saturday, 27 February, 2021) Easterlies affecting Mindanao. Mindanao will have partly cloudy to cloudy skies with isolated rainshowers or thunderstorms due to Easterlies. Light to moderate winds from east to northeast with slight to moderate seas.

Monday, January 25, 2021


PRESS RELEASE

 

With a budget of around Php 82.5 billion, the Department of Finance (“DOF”) maintains that it is well equipped to procure COVID-19 vaccines for more than 50 million Filipinos. With its role of overseeing negotiations with vaccine manufacturers, the DOF ensures the sufficiency and optimization of the financing sources for the procurement of vaccines, amid the limitations in global supply.

 

Health and safety are the primary considerations of the government in procuring vaccines. Prior to the actual procurement of vaccines, the vaccines undergo a stringent selection process by the Vaccine Evaluation and Selection Committee which is composed of the country’s health experts. The DOF and the Vaccine Czar strongly concur for the issuance by the Philippine Food and Drugs Administration of an Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) as a condition before any importation of vaccines into the country (and further payment) is made. In case health authorities deem that the vaccine should not receive an Emergency Use Authorization (EUA), then negotiations for that vaccine may cease.

 

Once the vaccines have been evaluated and included in the list of priority vaccines, they undergo a procurement process which is generally divided into three phases:

 

  1. The first phase involves the signing of a Non-Disclosure Agreement (NDA) with the vaccine manufacturer. While the laws on freedom of information generally apply, the NDA limits which information may be disclosed to non-parties, until such time that the Supply Agreement is concluded.

 

  1. The second phase of the process is when formal negotiations between the parties occur. It involves the exchange of the parties of their respective “term sheets”. A term sheet is a document which ideally outlines all the relevant offers and details on the vaccine procurement, including the number of doses to be ordered, the purchase price, payment dates, delivery schedules, and all other rights and obligations of the parties that shall be finalized in the definitive Supply Agreement.

 

  1. The final phase involves the signing of the Supply Agreement, which is the definitive agreement that governs the legal obligations of the parties.

 

Various safeguards are also incorporated in the procurement process. Before the Government can draw from its loans, compliance with the Vaccine Eligibility Criteria of the Multilateral Financial Institutions (“MFI”) such as the World Bank and the Asian Development Bank is necessary. The MFIs require the vaccine to secure approval from a Stringent Regulatory Authority from certain countries and/or the World Health Organization. MFIs also require compliance to standard policies such as those involving audit and anti-corruption, which are necessary to carry out transparency and accountability in the procurement process. 

 

Vaccine prices may vary, depending on market availability, the type of vaccine and other costs of manufacturing, logistics and distribution up until they reach the port of destination. The country can be assured that costs are reasonable based on acceptable international standards once they are endorsed by the MFIs for financing.

 

The DOF remains true to its mandate of providing sound and efficient management of the financial resources of the government and it will not entertain or pursue endeavors that will be disadvantageous to the Philippines and to the Filipino people. The DOF is committed to bring a safe, effective, and accessible supply of COVID-19 vaccines to the Philippines.