Mexico City, Dec 3 (efe-epa).- Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador on Thursday confirmed that the Mexican army and the Navy Secretariat will be the entities tasked with carrying out the nationwide distribution of the vaccine against Covid-19.
“The army and the Navy (will participate). We’re already defining the whole operation,” said the president during his regular morning press conference at the National Palace.
Along the same lines, the president expressed his hope that the Covid-19 vaccine that has been developed by the Pfizer pharmaceutical company will start to be distributed in Mexico in December.
“It’s already been approved in the United Kingdom, on the 10th (of December), apparently, it’s going to be analyzed and approved in the United States and I hope that a few days later it will be approved in Mexico and we can begin the distribution,” he said.
On Wednesday, the government announced the signing of a contract with the US big pharma firm to acquire 34.4 million doses of the Covid-19 vaccine.
The president said that next Tuesday Mexican health authorities will report on how the vaccine distribution will be organized and who the priority groups to be inoculated will be.
In addition, he said, he himself would only be vaccinated if he is deemed to be in one of the priority groups.
“If it is determined that it has to be the doctors and nurses, who are saving lives, (who are to be vaccinated), that doesn’t (include) the president. First those who most need it” will get the vaccine, he said.
However, he emphasized that he is in one of the groups at higher risk of serious health problems if he becomes infected since he suffers from hypertension and also is over age 60.
“I could be in the group of chronically ill due to my hypertension and because of my age, but before that it’s the nurses, doctors and teachers,” he said.
When questioned about the recent report by the National Institute of Statistics and Geography (Inegi) which discussed the closure of a million Mexican businesses, the majority of them in 2020, the president said that he has “other figures.”
“We’ve already reported how the economy is recovering little by little,” he said.
He also said that the figures generated by Inegi “don’t concern him” because “consumption has not dropped, jobs are being recovered, we don’t have any food shortage, there are no shortages, there’s no devaluation of the peso, we’ve not gone into debt and gasoline is less expensive.”
Lopez Obrador said that Mexico is a “country with a great future” thanks to its guarantee of access “to the most important market in the world, the relationship with the United States.”
He also emphasized the growth in projected remittances, which – he said – will increase by 12 percent in November, calling it “a phenomenon, a social miracle,” and adding that remittances will exceed “a record” $40 billion this year.
In addition to the more than 107,000 deaths from Covid-19 and the 1,133,000 confirmed cases in Mexico, the pandemic has resulted in a 9.6 percent contraction in Mexico’s GDP during the first nine months of the year.