Duterte wants China trip to thank Xi for Sinovac vaccine donation
MANILA, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte on Sunday said he wants to visit China and personally thank President Xi Jinping for the Sinovac Biotech vaccines donated by the Chinese government to the Philippines.
“I would like to just say that towards the end of the year, when everything has settled down, I intend to make a short visit to China to just shake hands with President Xi Jinping and to personally thank him for this donation,” he said during the turnover ceremony of Sinovac vaccines.
The Chinese government delivered its donation of 600,000 doses of the Sinovac vaccine to the Philippines on Sunday. The Chinese military aircraft carrying the vaccines touched down on Villamor Air Base in Pasay City at 4:10 p.m.
President Duterte personally received and inspected the donated Covid-19 vaccines. Other government officials, including Presidential spokesman Harry Roque, Health Secretary Francisco Duque III, vaccine czar Carlito Galvez Jr., were present during the ceremony.
He noted that out of all the vaccine donations made by China to other countries, the donated vaccines to the Philippines were the only ones delivered by China.
“China has donated several vaccines to several countries but it is only the donation made to the Philippines that was carried by a Chinese government plane,” the President said.
“‘Yung iba kinukuha doon sa China. Dito, hinatid sa atin. Maraming salamat po,” he added.
(The others were picked-up from China. Our vaccines were delivered to us.)
Duterte thanked the Chinese government for its “gesture of friendship and solidarity”, which he said is the “hallmark of Philippines-China relationship.”
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