Palace spokesman Harry Roque on Wednesday said the first batch of AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccines would reach the country on March 4.

“This is to confirm that the Philippines is set to receive 487,200 doses of AstraZeneca vaccines tomorrow, March 4, 2021, 7:30 p.m., as part of the first round of allocated doses from the Covax facility,” he said in a statement.

According to a source, a KLM flight is likely to carry the AstraZeneca doses. A KLM aircraft will arrive at Manila tomorrow at 7:30 p.m.

Vaccine czar Carlito Galvez Jr. meanwhile said he could not confirm the March 4 arrival of the AstraZeneca doses.

“I cannot confirm yet kasi dalawang beses na kaming nakuryente dyan,” he said.

The country was supposed to receive 525,600 doses of AstraZeneca vaccines on Monday from the Covax facility but was delayed due to global supply issues.

Earlier, Roque said President Rodrigo Duterte would receive the AstraZeneca vaccines just like he did for Sinovac.

Some 5.1 million vaccine doses from various manufacturers are expected to arrive in the first quarter of the year.

Roque said the country had secured enough doses to assure that there will be no disruptions to the country’s vaccination drive.

“Tuluy-tuloy na po iyan,” Palace spokesman Harry Roque said in a DZBB interview.

Roque said government-procured doses would arrive this month.

“May inaasahan po tayong isang milyon galing po sa Sinovac, ito na po iyong bibilhin natin. Ang ginagamit natin ay iyong donated lamang ‘no. Pero kung matatandaan ninyo, February, talagang magdi-deliver sila ng 50,000 at pagdating po ng Marso magdi-deliver sila ng 950,000.”

According to Galvez, the “main volume” of the country’s Covid-19 vaccines would arrive by late-2021.

About 161 million doses of Covid-19 vaccines are expected to arrive this year. John Ezekiel J. Hirro