The private sector has urged the government to address the legal issues involved in their procurement of the COVID-19 vaccines. 

This developed after President Duterte finally allowed the importation of the COVID-19 vaccines by the private sector. 

“The pronouncement of the President on private sector procurement of vaccines is welcome and we hope the legal issues surrounding this can be addressed immediately,” said the Management Association of the Philippines (MAP).  

It could be recalled that the government had said that all COVID-19 procurement must be course through the government. This is because vaccine producers do not want to deal with individual importers. There was also an issue of indemnity issue because the COVID-19 vaccines are for emergency use only. 

But after having difficulty securing the vaccines and amid rising cases in the country, the government relented. 

In addition, MAP has appealed to the government not to extend the one week enhanced community quarantine after April 4. 

MAP said that after a year of lockdowns, even large businesses are hurting and many smaller ones are on the verge of closing or have closed. 

“We understand that this is contingent on containing the rapid rise in cases. However, we hope the government also takes appropriate measures to avoid further collapse of the economy, such as providing support for businesses to help them mitigate the impact of the pandemic,” MAP said.  

The group urged that the current lockdown and any further extensions should be used to quickly augment the healthcare capacity and infrastructure, including massive testing in areas with high case counts.

Source: Manila Bulletin (