PH bans poultry products from Russia; world’s first human transmission of bird flu detected

Marje Pelayo   •   March 4, 2021   •   299

MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Agriculture (DA) has issued a temporary ban on the importation of poultry products from Russia.

Through DA Memorandum Order No. 17, the agency issued the ban after experts detected the world’s first case of human transmission of the highly pathogenic avian influenza (bird flu) or H5N8 strain in the country.

The order signed by Agriculture Secretary William Dar suspends the importation of domestic and wild birds and their by-products from the Russian Federation.

Specifically, these include poultry meat, day-old chicks, eggs, and semen.

Reports from the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) confirmed the ongoing outbreaks of the H5N8 highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) in several areas of the Russian Federation.

The Agriculture Chief emphasized that there is a “need to prevent the entry of HPAI virus to protect the health of the local poultry population.” 

Following the temporary ban, the DA also ordered the suspension of processing, evaluation of the application, and issuance of Sanitary and Phytosanitary (SPS) import clearance to these commodities.

READ: Philippines now free of H5N6 bird flu – DA

It should be recalled that the Philippines in January was declared free of avian influenza or bird flu by the OIE, after the elimination of avian influenza A (H5N6) that was detected in Rizal and Pampanga.

20K Sputnik V COVID-19 vaccine doses to arrive in PH ‘in next few days’ – envoy

Robie de Guzman   •   April 20, 2021

 

MANILA, Philippines – Around 20,000 doses of Sputnik V COVID-19 vaccine developed by Russia’s Gamaleya Institute are expected to be delivered within the next few days, the Philippine ambassador to Russia announced Tuesday.

“My understanding is that we have complied with their requirement because they would not deliver unless they are satisfied with our logistics,” Ambassador Carlos Sorreta said during a Palace briefing.

Sorreta said the initial batch of Sputnik V vaccine doses would be used to “fine-tune” logistics to ensure that the vaccines’ temperature requirement will be met.

Sputnik V vaccine needs to be stored at a temperature of -18 degrees Celsius.

Sorreta also reported that an additional shipment of nearly 500,000 doses will arrive in the Philippines before end of April or early May.

“Over the next few months, we’re going seven figures, about 20 million doses before the end of the year,” he said.

“I think there will be delivery as scheduled based on the agreement signed by (vaccine czar) Secretary (Carlito) Galvez,” he added.

Galvez earlier said that the government is expecting to receive 20 million doses of Sputnik V this year.

Sorreta said the delivery of Sputnik V vaccines to the Philippines took a while due to some issues that needed to be addressed.

“We are happy about this development, although it took a while. It was unavoidable. The FDA, ginagawa nila ang kanilang trabaho ngunit merong konting differences sa terminologies, sa technologies so that those have been overcome,” he said.

He also expressed optimism that the Philippines will get the vaccine supply that the government requires to meet its target inoculation despite the global supply shortage.

“We have to be cognizant of the realities, the demand is very high for the vaccine and the best we can do it to try to lock in the supplies,” he said.

“Of course, we have to manage expectations. There could be problems in production. Many things can come up,” he added.

The country has so far received over 3 million COVID-19 vaccine doses made by Sinovac and AstraZeneca firms. More than 1.4 million of these doses have been administered to healthcare workers, senior citizens and persons with co-morbidities.

The government rolled out its COVID-19 vaccination program on March 1 and is targeting to inoculate 70 million people this year.

Duterte, Putin vow to further enhance PH-Russia cooperation vs COVID-19

Robie de Guzman   •   April 14, 2021

 

File Photo: (L-R) Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte and Russian President Vladimir Putin

MANILA, Philippines – President Rodrigo Duterte met with his Russian counterpart, Vladimir Putin in a telesummit on Tuesday  to reaffirm bilateral ties of the two nations and discuss ways to combat the coronavirus pandemic, Malacañang said.

In a statement, Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said Duterte had an “open and productive” telesummit with Putin that lasted for 30 minutes.

“President Duterte and President Putin reaffirmed their shared commitment to further enhance cooperation as the Philippines and Russia commemorate the 45th anniversary of the diplomatic relations this year and vowed to cooperate in the fight against COVID-19,” Roque said.

Duterte also thanked Putin for Russia’s commitment to bolster cooperation in various areas, including fighting the COVID-19 pandemic, he added.

The Palace said both leaders discussed the global and regional vaccine landscapes, noting that vaccines such as Russian-made Sputnik V “must be mobilized to as many countries as possible.”

Vaccine czar and National Task Force against COVID-19 chief implementer Carlito Galvez Jr. earlier said the country is expecting the arrival of Sputnik V COVID-19 vaccine doses this month. The Philippine government ordered a total 20 million Sputnik V doses.

Roque said the two chief executives stressed the importance of ramping global production and supplies of COVID-19 vaccines.

Both leaders also noted the steady progress in defense and security cooperation between the two countries, fostered by regular exchanges between defense, intelligence and military agencies.

Roque said both leaders vowed to sustain the momentum gained between the Philippines and Russia over the past five years.

“President Putin highlighted the positive trajectory of Russia-Philippines relations and emphasized the many opportunities for greater cooperation in the fields of trade and investments, agriculture and energy development even as both countries work on further enhancing political-security cooperation,” he said.

Roque said that during the telesummit, Duterte also reiterated his invitation for Putin to visit the Philippines as soon as circumstances allow, which the Russian president welcomed.

Duterte set to have phone conversation with Russia’s Putin – Palace

Robie de Guzman   •   April 13, 2021

 

MANILA, Philippines – President Rodrigo Duterte is set to talk via phone call with his Russian counterpart, President Vladimir Putin, Malacañang said Tuesday.

“I can confirm na may usapan po sa telepono ang ating presidente at ang presidente ng Russia. Yun lang po ang aking masasabi,” Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said during a Palace press briefing.

Roque, however, cannot say when the phone conversation will take place, saying that Duterte’s schedule is “classified secret.”

He also did not provide details on the possible issues the two leaders will talk about.

The Philippine government is eyeing to get 20 million doses of the Russian-made COVID-19 vaccine.  Around 500,000 doses of Russia’s Gamaleya Institute-made Sputnik V are expected to be delivered to the country in the coming weeks.

REACH US

The Philippine Broadcast Hub

UNTV, 915 Barangay Philam,

EDSA, Quezon City M.M. 1104

(+632) 8396-8688 (Tel)

info@untv-newsandrescue.com (General inquiries)

ABOUT UNTV

UNTV is a major TV broadcast network with 24-hour programming. An Ultra High Frequency station with strong brand content that appeal to everyone, UNTV is one of the most trusted and successful Philippine networks that guarantees wholesome and quality viewing experience.