By SAMMY JULIAN
Manila News Bureau Chief
MANILA — The European Union (EU) will provide a €30-million grant (approximately P1.8 billion) to support Philippine government initiatives in developing the country’s health sector.
The grant is part of the Philippines Health Sector Reform Contract (Phsrc) that the Philippines and EU signed recently.
It is the third EU-funded program to support the Philippine Health Sector Reform Agenda.
Of the amount, €20.5 million will be directly channeled to the Philippines’ national treasury.
A complementary component of €9.5 million, on the other hand, aims to fund various technical assistance and capacity building programs to strengthen the health delivery systems of the Department of Health.
The agreement increases the total support of EU to the health sector to a total of €118 million (about P7.2 billion) between 2006 and 2018.
Europe Aid Cooperation for Asia director Dirk Meganck for EU and Finance Secretary Cesar Purisima for the Philippine government signed the deal.
Likwise, out of the €30 million, EU is authorizing the release of €10 million to support the DOH’s “build back better” plan after super typhoon “Yolanda” (international name: Haiyan), said European Union Ambassador Guy Ledoux.
Ledoux said the grant is an affirmation of EU’s commitment to ensure that disadvantaged and vulnerable people have access to quality health services through a more effective, efficient and equitable health system./PN