AstraZeneca says it had positive meeting with EU over vaccine row

European Union member states and the pharmaceutical company are at odds over the delivery of shots after the group shipped less than indicated to the EU than in the initial agreement. Italian daily Corriere della Sera said on Sunday AstraZeneca had yet to react to a letter sent by the Commission on March 19 to complain about low-contract supplies of COVID-19 vaccines.

Reuters | Updated: 11-04-2021 23:55 IST | Created: 11-04-2021 23:51 IST
AstraZeneca says it had positive meeting with EU over vaccine row
Representative Image Image Credit: ANI

AstraZeneca had a positive meeting with the European Commission last week, the Anglo-Swedish company said after an Italian newspaper said the group had not replied to an EU letter of complaint over COVID-19 vaccines within a 20-day deadline. European Union member states and the pharmaceutical company are at odds over the delivery of shots after the group shipped less than indicated to the EU than in the initial agreement.

Italian daily Corriere della Sera said on Sunday AstraZeneca had yet to react to a letter sent by the Commission on March 19 to complain about low-contract supplies of COVID-19 vaccines. "We can confirm we have responded to the Commission within the required time-frame of the dispute resolution mechanism, and that our team had a very collaborative meeting with the Commission last week," AstraZeneca's Director of Global Media Relations Matthew Kent said in an emailed message.

Earlier on Sunday a spokesman for the European Commission confirmed that Brussels on March 19 had written to AstraZeneca, calling it "a notice for dispute settlement", adding this was a first step to engage in an dialogue to resolve the issue. "At this stage we are still waiting for the necessary elements ... we remain in contact with AstraZeneca to ensure timely delivery of a sufficient number of doses," the spokesman had told Reuters, without elaborating.

According to the contract signed between EU and the company, which is public, if a dispute arises, one of the parties shall first notify the problem with a letter. Then, after 20 days from the written notice, they "shall meet and attempt to resolve the dispute by good faith negotiations". Under the contract signed on COVID-19 vaccines, European Union states had expected to receive 120 million doses by the end of March from AstraZeneca, but the company had supplied only 30.12 million doses, Corriere said.

AstraZeneca's spokesman did not comment on the supply data. With contagion still rising in many European countries and vaccination campaigns hitting hurdles, some governments have shown increasing irritation with the pharmaceuticals group.

"Manifestly, they (AstraZeneca) did not honour their commitments and thus, in a certain way, they were mocking us Europeans," France's European Affairs Minister Clement Beaune said on Sunday, speaking to LCI television news channel. Beaune said the EU letter to the Anglo-Swedish group could even lead to a battle in court.

"We sent a formal notice in recent days, it is the beginning of a possible judicial procedure if the company doesn't fix things," he said, adding that putting pressure on the company to accelerate production in Europe appeared to be a better option compared with starting a legal process, which would take time. (Additional reporting by Kate Abnett in Brussels and Richard Lough in Paris; editing by David Evans)

(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)


TRENDING

OPINION / BLOG / INTERVIEW

Blockchain in Healthcare: Opportunities and challenges

The use of blockchain in healthcare is a relatively new innovation with many of its uses still being explored and related technologies being developed, improved, and scaled. ...

Debate surrounding vaccine passports and development misses bigger picture

... ...

Blockchain vs IOTA: Looking for a better alternative

... ...

For stability, Iraq needs to crack down on corruption

... ...

Videos

Latest News

England's IPL players unlikely to find place in Test squad against NZ: Reports

England are unlikely to rush their Indian Premier League players straight from quarantine to the Test squad against New Zealand as they would be lacking red-ball practice, according to reports.This will mean that the likes of Jos Buttler, J...

COVID-19: TN CM inspects UCC

Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M K Stalin inspected a Unified Command Centre, which handles a number of matters related to Covid-19 management, here and attended to a phone call from a person seeking hospital bed, the government said.The UCC ope...

Cyclone Tauktae: Goa authorities gear up to tackle situation

The government machinery in Goa has put in place necessary measures to tackle the situation in view of the warning about cyclone Tauktae, officials said on Saturday.As per the India Meteorological Departments IMD prediction, Konkan and Goa ...

Zensar acquires US-based digital engineering firm M3bi

RPG company Zensar Technologies said on Saturday it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire M3bi, a Arizona-based data and digital engineering firm. The acquisition will be completely funded by internal accruals. Zensar said the ...

Give Feedback