Russia offers cheaper meds, pharma, healthcare to PH

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$875-M B2B projects in other sectors signed
THE Russian government has offered to provide the Philippines cheaper medicines, other pharmaceutical products and healthcare solutions under business deals between the two countries, in addition to agreements previously signed by private businessmen, Trade and Industry Secretary Ramon Lopez said from Russia.

The new offer was discussed after some Philippine and Russian companies signed $875-million worth of business-to-business (B2B) projects on May 26.

“So far, we have around $875 million B2B projects between Philippine and Russian companies. A number would be in the areas of iron and steel, transport, agribusiness, multipurpose vehicles, power, energy, property development, transport and construction,” the trade chief told reporters in a Viber message over the weekend.

Lopez had joined President Rodrigo Duterte and other Cabinet members and a Philippine business delegation in the president’s first official visit to Russia last week.


The chairman of the Russian Committee on External Affairs, Evgeny Grigoriev, has “immediately identified their intent to help in the field of cheaper medicine, the pharmaceuticals industry and healthcare solutions,” Lopez said.

“They are also advanced in marine and naval engineering, and offered training and apprenticeship to Filipinos, as well as in education scholarships in life science and research institutions, which St. Petersburg is known for,” he said.

“We will also do industrial cooperation agreements to promote common interests in iron and steel, machineries, pharmaceuticals, agribusiness, shipbuilding and ship repair, automotive, aerospace as well as in Culture, Arts and many more.”

The Philippine delegation, representing 30 percent of the participants, attended the Philippine-Russia business forum held at St. Petersburg in Moscow earlier last week, with the Russians accounting for 70 percent.

$875-M B2B projects signed
On Friday, Philippine and Russian companies signed $875-million worth of business-to-business (B2B) projects in the metal, transport, power and agribusiness industries, among other areas of business, Trade Secretary Ramon Lopez said.

Lopez told reporters the Philippines also agreed with Russia to pursue economic, scientific and technical cooperation among private and government institutions such as the Department of Trade and Industry, Philippine International Trading Corp., Board of Investments, industry associations namely the Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Roscongress Foundation and Chamber of Commerce and Industry of the Russian Federation (CCRIF).

Lopez had stayed behind in Russia, after Duterte had left, to sign bilateral agreements with their counterparts in the host country in a bid “to deliver the message that business will continue” in spite of the terrorist attacks on Marawi City in Mindanao.

He and Foreign Affairs Secretary Alan Peter Cayetano had been directed by the President to complete the scheduled official meetings with their government counterparts in Russia and a series of business forums.

Duterte had cut his trip short after learning of the terrorist attacks on Marawi City, which prompted him to put the entire island of Mindanao under martial law on May 23.

About 300 investors accompanied Duterte in his state visit.

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