MALACAÑANG on Monday said the coronavirus vaccine the government would order from China’s Sinovac Biotech Ltd. was competitively priced.

One dose costs about P650, or P1,300 for the two doses needed by a person, presidential spokesman Harry L. Roque told an online news briefing. This is close to the price offered to Indonesia, he added.

He also said the reported P3,629 price for two doses reported to the Senate was “fake news.”

“I assure you, the price of Sinovac vaccines is lower than its commercial price in China,” Mr. Roque said.

The Philippines is in talks to order 25 million doses of Sinovac’s vaccine, and the first 50,000 doses are expected to arrive next month.

Mr. Roque said the government would disclose the negotiated price for the vaccines once the deal is finalized.

He said the state was not favoring any vaccine suppliers, adding that it was just a matter of which vaccine brands come first.

Mr. Roque also said President Rodrigo R. Duterte would have to decide whether to agree to be the first to be vaccinated in the country to address public doubt.

Meanwhile, Sinovac said it had given the Philippines a reasonable price for its coronavirus vaccine.

Sinovac General Manager Helen Yang said their vaccine is cheaper than what had been reported, without divulging the price due to confidentiality.

“I will assure you that this is a very good price that we provided to the Philippines,” she told CNN Philippines. She added that the deal with the government had not been finalized.

Senator Panfilo M. Lacson on Sunday said Sinovac vaccines in the Philippines could cost more than P1,800 a dose.

Sinovac is applying for emergency use authorization (EUA) in the country. — Kyle Aristophere T. Atienza and Vann Marlo M. Villegas