News Release

Philippines, Russia enhance ties to address COVID-19 pandemic

President Rodrigo Roa Duterte and Russian President Vladimir Putin discuss views to further strengthen efforts of the two nations in the global fight against COVID-19 during a phone call at the Malacañang Golf (Malago) Clubhouse in Malacañang Park, Manila on April 13, 2021. They both agreed to work together to ramp up supplies and production of vaccines to meet the needs of our population. Also discussed were defense cooperation, energy, trade and investments, among others. KING RODRIGUEZ/ PRESIDENTIAL PHOTO

The Philippines and Russia have agreed for a greater collaboration to combat the current coronavirus pandemic particularly as the two countries commemorate the 45th anniversary of diplomatic relations this year.

During a 30-minute telesummit on Tuesday, President Rodrigo Roa Duterte and Russian President Vladimir Putin reaffirmed their commitments to further enhance cooperation to defeat COVID-19, according to a statement released by Malacañang.

The two leaders discussed both global and regional landscapes, noting that vaccines such as Russia’s Sputnik V must be made available to countries needing COVID-19 jabs.

Both leaders stressed the importance of ramping up global vaccine production and supply.

The Filipino leader expressed his gratitude to President Putin for Russia’s commitment in bolstering cooperation in various areas including combating the current pandemic.

The Philippines eyes to procure 20 million doses of Sputnik V from Russia.

Aside from tackling the present health crisis, the two leaders also noted the steady progress in defense and security cooperation between the two countries fostered by regular exchanges between their militaries, vowing to sustain the momentum gained over the fast five years.

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

President Duterte reiterated during the telesummit his invitation for President Putin to visit the Philippines as soon as circumstances allow, which the Russian leader welcomed.

Joining President Duterte during the telesummit were Foreign Affairs Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr. and Senator Christopher Lawrence “Bong” Go. PND