The Philippines has done an excellent job against Covid-19, Palace spokesman Harry Roque said on Monday, more than a year removed from the first local transmission of the virus in the country.

“Na-control po natin ang pagkalat ng sakit lalung-lalo na kung ikukumpara tayo sa mas mayayaman at mga bansa na mas mararami at mas moderno ang mga ospital,” Roque said after being asked about the country’s response against Covid-19 in the past year.

The country’s gross domestic product growth hit its record-low in 2020, with a 9.5-percent contraction.

Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III earlier said P2 billion was being lost daily due to the pandemic.

The Philippine Statistics Authority reported in December last year that 4.5 million Filipinos lost their jobs in 2020.

As of March 8, the disease has killed 12,521 Filipinos.

Despite these, Roque insisted that the government was excellent in managing the situation.

“Unfortunately, habang wala ang bakuna, talagang maraming mahahawa at mayroon pa ring mamamatay. But we have limited deaths to around 12,000 – ikumpara mo naman iyan sa Estados Unidos,” he said.

“I think I will maintain that it has been excellent management. We regret that people died but this is a pandemic and we all know now how to prevent these deaths because we know who are particularly vulnerable to Covid-19 – the seniors, kaya nga ginawa natin sila ang mga homeliners kasama na iyong mga with co-morbidities.” John Ezekiel J. Hirro