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Duterte ‘advance payment’ remark no effect on COVID vaccine talks with pharma industries: Palace

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By Prince Golez

Malacañang on Wednesday assured that President Rodrigo Duterte’s remarks on coronavirus (Covid-19) vaccines won’t affect Philippine negotiations with vaccine developers.

During his recorded address yesterday, Duterte chastised pharmaceutical companies in “Western countries” for asking advance payment for Covid-19 vaccine.

Western pharmaceutical companies, according to the chief executive, are developing vaccines for profit.

“Wala naman pong epekto yan. We continue to negotiate with everyone. As in fact, the President wants to ensure na magkakaroon tayo ng vaccine kahit sino pa ang unang maka-develop niyan,” said Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque.

When asked to identify the firms asking the Philippines to pay in advance for vaccines, Roque told reporters: “I suppose U.S.-based din po. But, there are at least two Western companies who have claimed to be (in Phase 3 clinical trials). That is the U.S. and the U.K.”

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