In the second quarter of 2021, AstraZeneca will deliver less than half of the 180 million vaccines against the coronavirus contracted by the European Union for this period, Reuters reported, citing an EU official directly involved in the Community’s talks with the company. According to the agency’s information, less than 90 million doses of this vaccine are to be delivered to EU countries from April to June.
AstraZeneca’s deal with the EU, which was leaked last week, indicates that it has committed to deliver 180 million doses to 27 EU countries in the second quarter of this year. However, as the Reuters agency reports, which identified its anonymous source in the European Union as a person directly involved in talks with the British-Swedish company, this order will not be implemented even in half.
EU representatives learned at meetings with the company that between April and June, less than 90 million doses of the COVID-19 vaccine will be delivered.
The news came shortly after AstraZeneka significantly cut shipments in the first quarter and, Reuters points out, could impact the European Union’s ability to meet its goal of vaccinating 70 percent of the adult population by summer.
A Reuters source also confirmed that AstraZeneca will only deliver 40 of the 90 million doses of the vaccine promised to the EU in the first quarter. In 2020, the concern was to guarantee the EU 30 million doses, but the Community did not allow the vaccine to be used yet.
In total, by the end of June, only 130 out of the planned 300 million doses of the AstraZeneki vaccine may reach the EU, the agency calculates.
“As we are working extremely hard to increase the productivity of our EU supply chain and doing everything possible to capitalize on our global supply chain, we hope to be able to deliver more closely to what was previously guaranteed under the agreement,” said an AstraZeneca spokesman in a statement.
As Reuters points out, however, he declined to comment on the exact numbers.
The European Commission also refused the agency to officially comment on the case.
Main photo source: DAN HIMBRECHTS / EPA / PAP