EU seeks closer cooperation with US on vaccine supplies

US is home to one of three plants authorized by European regulator to produce AstraZeneca vaccine.

EU seeks closer cooperation with US on vaccine supplies

The EU wants to access coronavirus vaccine doses produced in the United States, the Financial Times reported Saturday, as part of broader cooperation on the coronavirus response agreed by leaders on Friday.

The U.S. is bound by an executive order signed by former President Donald Trump in December to use vaccine doses made in the U.S. to meet domestic demand first. The U.S. is home to one of the three plants authorized by the European Medicine Agency to produce the AstraZeneca vaccine, which is approved for use in the EU but has not yet received the green light from U.S. regulators.

“We are aware of the U.S. executive order. We trust that we can work together with the U.S. to ensure that vaccines produced or bottled in the U.S. for the fulfillment of vaccine producers’ contractual obligations with the EU will be fully honored,” a European Commission spokesperson told POLITICO.

The EU is struggling to pick up the pace of its vaccination campaign, following a number of setbacks including AstraZeneca slashing the number of deliveries expected in the first quarter of this year.

In a call on Friday, Commission President Ursula von der Leyen and U.S. President Joe Biden agreed to cooperate to ensure the smooth functioning of global supply chains for vaccines.

“The EU and the US are both major producers of vaccines and we have a strong interest in working together, for the good functioning of global supply chains,” von der Leyen said in a statement after the call.

Commissioner Thierry Breton, who has been tapped by von der Leyen to oversee the EU’s vaccine procurement efforts, will cooperate with his U.S. counterpart Jeffrey Zients “regarding supply chains in the vaccine production,” a Commission spokesperson said.

Source : Politico EU More