PH receives over 800K AstraZeneca vaccine doses from Japan

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, October 28) — The country received 896,000 more doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine on Thursday, pushing the country closer to the 100 million mark in vaccine deliveries.

The latest batch of vaccines was donated by Japan and arrived past noon at Terminal 1 of the Ninoy Aquino International Airport.

Vaccine czar Carlito Galvez Jr. and Japanese Ambassador to the Philippines Kazuhiko Koshikawa were present at the arrival and in a briefing during the arrival. Both officials expressed hope that the vaccines could help the country achieve herd immunity.

"Japan firmly stands by and will continue to cooperate for the Philippines to prevail over this pandemic...We are confident that a better Christmas for Filipinos is now well within reach," said Koshikawa.

Meanwhile, Galvez thanked the Japanese government for the donated vaccines.

"The Filipino people and President Rodrigo Duterte and I thank the Japanese government for your donation of an additional 1.9 million doses, which comprises 3 million doses, that will save the lives of more or less 1.5 million Filipinos," he said.

Galvez said the arrival of the vaccines comes at a crucial time as the government expands its vaccination program that now includes minors aged 12 to 17.

The latest delivery puts the total vaccine doses shipped to the Philippines at 99,551,290. Another delivery later tonight of 976,950 shots of the Pfizer vaccine will breach the 100 million mark in total vaccines delivered to the country.