Malacañang said the country welcomes the new year with renewed hope and courage with the nearing anticipated arrival of vaccines for coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19).
Presidential spokesman Harry Roque Jr. said the government is on track with the national vaccination plan and the earliest roll out of a vaccine is expected in the first quarter of next year.
“In 2020, we have identified geographical and sectoral priorities for vaccination. Negotiations and discussions with vaccine manufacturers are ongoing, and tripartite agreements with the government, the private sector, and allied governments are now rolling,” he said in a statement.
“We are indeed on track and this gives us a sense of optimism,” he added.
Roque hailed Filipinos for their resiliency amid the present crisis.
“The challenges we faced as a nation in 2020 were daunting but because of the resilient Filipino spirit, we fought and carried on.”
He called for unity amid the crisis brought about by the pandemic.
“We hope to see an end to the pandemic and continue the pursuit for a stronger and healthier Philippines, which would only be realized if the government and citizens would work together to achieve this goal,” Roque said.
“Let us therefore make Year 2021 as a year of healing, recovery and bouncing back,” he added.