Pharmaceutical companies demanded non-disclosure agreements with governments procuring vaccines for coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19).
Senate President Vicente Sotto 3rd confirmed it Wednesday night after meeting with vaccine tsar secretary Carlito Galvez Jr.
Galvez showed Sotto and Senators Panfilo Lacson, Ronald.dela Rosa and the mayor of the city of Baguio, Benjamin Magalong, the necessary documents on the acquisition of vaccines.
“We were able to see all the necessary documents and the proposed agreements,” Sotto said in a text message when asked about the outcome of his meeting with Galvez.
“In fact, there are non-disclosure agreements required by pharmaceutical companies internationally,” the Senate chief said.
Galvez had warned that the Philippines would lose its 148 million doses of Covid-19 vaccines which it asked seven pharmaceutical companies if vaccine prices would be disclosed.
Galvez stressed this to explain why he could not disclose the cost of every brand of Covid-19 vaccine the government hopes to buy, due to existing confidentiality disclosure agreements (CDAs) with developers.
Sotto added: “I will inform our colleagues about the important facts as soon as possible (as soon as possible). I was with Sen[ator] Lacson, Sen[ator] Dela Rosa and Mayor Magalong de Baguio “.
“Gen.[eral]/ Sec[retary] Gálvez assures us through the agreements that there will be no margin for surcharges on the part of any person, entity or group, as all payments will go directly to the pharmaceutical companies of the credit institution who will also establish the appropriate guarantees, ”he said.
Sotto said the third Senate hearing Friday on the government’s mass vaccination program will “continue.”
“And we hope we can get enough information to be able to convince our compatriots that vaccines, regardless of brand, will be needed to defeat the virus,” he added.
Asked why Magalong was present at the meeting, Sotto said, “I think he was also interested in the agreements, as Baguio has entered through the national government.”