The Department of Labour and Employment said the National Task Force against COVID-19 has approved their request for additional vaccines for workers in the manufacturing and construction industries.
In a statement, Labour Secretary Silvestre Bello III thanked vaccine czar Carlito Galvez for the swift response to the department’s request.
Bello said with this, 452,000 doses would be allocated for factory workers in Calabarzon, Central Luzon and Central Visayas regions, and for construction workers in the National Capital Region.
The labour chief said he acknowledges challenges in vaccine supply but it was also necessary to allocate portion for workers contributing to the economy. “We believe doing this would speed up economic recovery,” Bello said.
He added that the 11.8 percent growth in the country’s Gross Domestic Product emphasizes the need to inoculate active members of the economy.
“This is particularly true to the manufacturing and construction sectors that contributed much to that growth,” Bello added.
The Philippine Statistics Authority earlier this month reported that the country exited recession in the second quarter of the year and posted 11.8 percent growth year-on-year during the April-June period. A fresh wave of lockdowns enforced due to the threat of the Delta variant, however, threatens this rebound by the economy.
The Philippines is currently grappling with a spike in COVID-19 infections in the country, as health authorities post more than 12,000 new cases in the recent week.
The national government is looking to ramp up its vaccination of priority groups, including workers in essential industries currently under the A4 category.
So far, 13.2 million Filipinos or 12.1 percent of the country’s total population have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19.