MANILA – The Bureau of Customs (BOC) on Wednesday reported that the 1 million doses of Sinovac vaccines purchased by the government from China have been cleared and released by the Port of Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA).
In a statement, the bureau said the first batch of vaccines arrived around 4 p.m. on Monday via Philippine Airlines Flight No. PR361.
The vaccines were also escorted by the BOC to ensure its safe delivery and discharge at Metropac Cold Storage Facility in Marikina City pending nationwide distribution.
It added that the vaccines were cleared as early as March 26, using its One-Stop Shop Advance Clearance Procedure.
This is the fifth batch of Covid-19 vaccines that arrived at the Port.
So far, the BOC processed, cleared, and released over 2.5 million doses of Covid-19 vaccines.
Commissioner Rey Leonardo Guerrero said the bureau continues to prepare and expeditiously process, clear, and release arriving Covid-19 vaccines in full support of the national vaccination program of the government.
Meanwhile, Port of NAIA District Collector Carmelita Talusan, assured the public that they will remain steadfast and dedicated in ensuring the timely and immediate release of personal protective equipment (PPE) sets and medical supplies amid the threat of Covid-19.
On Monday, President Rodrigo Duterte, together with Senator Christopher Lawrence “Bong” Go, Health Secretary Francisco Duque III, National Task Force against Covid-19 Chief Implementer and Vaccine Czar Secretary Carlito Galvez Jr. and Chinese Ambassador to the Philippines Huang Xilian, personally received the vaccines at Villamor Airbase in Pasay City.
Galvez said the government is expecting the delivery of around 1.5 to 4 million of the remaining procured doses from Sinovac by April and May, together with the additional 979,200 doses of AstraZeneca vaccines from the COVAX facility led by the World Health Organization.
He added that the remaining 24 million Sinovac doses procured by the national government are scheduled to arrive in the following months. (PNA)