February 02, 2021
The Philippines is reopening its doors to select foreign nationals on February 1, 2021 after imposing a travel ban on travelers from countries that have reported the COVID-19 variant first detected in the United Kingdom, an official said Saturday.
Those who will be allowed to enter are foreign spouses of Philippine nationals; foreign minor children and foreign children of Filipino nationals; foreign parents of minor Filipino children; foreign seafarers; accredited foreign government and international organization officials and their dependents; foreign airline crew; those with valid long-term visas such as the temporary resident visa, legal resident status visa, permanent resident visa, and native born visa; foreign investors with valid visa, those with pre-arranged employment visa and balikbayan traveling with their spouse and dependent children.
The National Economic and Development Authority says Metro Manila would be “in a better position” to further relax quarantine rules after February. With Metro Manila again getting placed under GCQ until end-February, Chua said the economic hub would already be under general community quarantine for twelve months, adding that 700 million in wages, salaries and other incomes are lost for every single day the region is under GCQ.
ADB said the Philippine government’s vaccine supply contracts with it, including direct payments by ADB to vaccine manufacturers, will follow the multilateral lender's procurement rules and guidelines, and ADB’s anti-corruption and integrity policy.
With 228 affirmative votes, 6 negative votes, and no abstention, the chamber passed House Bill 8512, which seeks to amend Republic Act 11199 or the Social Security Act of 2018. The proposal will grant the President of the Philippines power, in consultation with the Secretary of Finance as the chairperson of the Social Security Commission, to suspend the implementation of the scheduled increases in premium rates in times of national emergencies when public interest so requires.
The public is urged to continue following minimum health standards as vaccination against COVID-19 may take several years, the World Health Organization said Monday.
The document, which is over a hundred pages, mainly comprises seven phases of the plan, divided into chapters. These are: Scientific Evaluation and Selection, Diplomatic Negotiation and Engagement, Procurement and Financing, Shipment and Storage, Distribution and Deployment, Implementation of a Nationwide Vaccination; and Assessment, Evaluation and Monitoring.
At least 5.6 million COVID-19 vaccine doses from US drugmaker Pfizer and the United Kingdom's AstraZeneca are slated to reach the Philippines within the first quarter of 2021, vaccine czar Carlito Galvez Jr. said Sunday.
Salceda, House Ways and Means Committee chairman, said both panels in a bicameral meeting over the weekend concurred major items, including shorter incentives for domestic enterprises, stringent controls against illicit trade in certain ecozones, and longer incentives for all areas outside the National Capital Region.
Makati firms' employees included in free vaccination program
Makati's COVID-19 vaccination program will include employees of all registered businesses in the city regardless of their residence, Mayor Abby Binay said Sunday. Companies must have a 2021 business permit and must be up-to-date with their tax payments, including those paying in installments, to get free vaccines, Binay said.
State insurer PhilHealth has yet to include saliva COVID-19 tests in its benefit package, the Philippine Red Cross said Sunday. The non-government organization last week launched the cheaper and non-invasive saliva PCR test in its Metro Manila laboratories following approval from the Department of Health.
During a virtual briefing, the official reiterated that 25 vaccine makers were in negotiations with the government to possibly run clinical trials in the Philippines. "Out of these, there are already 12 that have signed confidentiality disclosure agreements," he said. Similar CDAs were signed earlier with three other vaccine makers whose clinical trials have been approved, bringing the total number of such agreements to 15.
Republic Act (RA) No. 11521 further strengthens the Anti-Money Laundering Act (AMLA) of 2001, including giving additional powers to the Anti Money Laundering Council (AMLC) and expanding the list of covered persons.