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The German Minister of Health, Jens Spahn, on Tuesday was in favor of restricting exports of vaccines against covid-19 produced in the European Union due to delays in delivery.
“The vaccines that leave the EU need a license so that at least we know what is produced and what leaves Europe. And if they leave Europe, there is a fair distribution,” Spahn told the ZDF chain.
On the delays announced by the pharmaceutical AstraZeneca in the delivery of its vaccine in the EU, the minister said that he could understand that “in a process as complex as the production of vaccines, sometimes there are problems.” However, this should “affect everyone fairly and equitably.”
In Great Britain, for example, there are no anticipated supply delays.
It’s not about “the EU first, but about Europe’s share, that is, the fair share,” he said.
Spahn noted that the EU had signed contracts with AstraZeneca and had already pre-financed the construction of new production capacities.
The European Commission has reserved up to 400 million doses of this vaccine, which is already used in the UK. Its use in Europe is expected to be released on Friday.
The British-Swedish group had warned on Friday that deliveries of its vaccine in Europe would be lower than expected in the first quarter, due to a “drop in performance” at a European manufacturing facility.
The delays, which come after delays in Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine deliveries, angered EU Health Commissioner Stella Kyriakides on Monday, who proposed a “transparency mechanism” on exports of vaccines outside of the European Union.
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