Philippines receives first batch of Russia's Sputnik V vaccines

MANILA (Reuters) - The Philippines received its first batch of Russia's Sputnik V COVID-19 vaccine on Saturday, the presidential office said.

The 15,000 doses of Sputnik V, developed by Russia's Gamaleya Institute, will be used in four cities in the capital region, the Philippines' coronavirus hotspot, the health ministry said.

It was supposed to arrive on April 25, but was delayed by logistical issues.

The Philippines is negotiating to buy 20 million doses of Sputnik V, as part of its target to inoculate up to 70 million adults this year.

It has so far received 4.04 million vaccine doses, more than 86% of which were from China's Sinovac Biotech and the rest from AstraZeneca through the COVAX facility. More than 1.8 million doses had been administered as of April 27, government data showed.

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With nearly 1.05 million infections and 17,354 deaths, the Philippines is battling one of the worst COVID-19 outbreaks in Asia.

(Reporting by Neil Jerome Morales; Editing by Alex Richardson)

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