Germany to talk to Biden team over securing changes to vaccine distribution

Document from the German health ministry responds to criticism of EU strategy.

Germany to talk to Biden team over securing changes to vaccine distribution

The German government is “keen to enter into talks” with the new U.S. administration to agree changes to the U.S. policy that prioritizes local coronavirus vaccine supply at U.S. production facilities, according to a document from the German health ministry. 

In a lengthy document published Tuesday that responded to questions from Germany’s Social Democrats, the health ministry sets out why the U.S. was able to secure additional supply of BioNTech/Pfizer vaccines for specific dates, whereas the EU’s increase in supply is set to come “in 2021.” 

The health ministry states that an executive order from the U.S. president meant that production facilities in the country are “encouraged to initially make vaccine available for supply in the USA.” This meant that European production sites of the BioNTech/Pfizer vaccine, as well as the Moderna vaccine, need to supply the rest of the world, in addition to Europe.

“The companies as well as the federal government are keen to enter into talks with the new U.S. administration in order to reach adjustments,” wrote the health ministry.

The document also discussed the bilateral deal Germany has with BioNTech/Pfizer — something that the Commission has let Germany off the hook for, even though it appears to go against the bloc’s effort to craft a united vaccine strategy.

At issue, the health ministry explained, is the funding received by BioNTech from Germany’s education and research ministry. This cash meant that BioNTech had to provide a portion of vaccines to Germany. As a result, the health ministry had to issue a pre-contractual letter of intent in the form of a memorandum of understanding on September 8 for 30 million additional doses of the vaccine, wrote the health ministry.

Source : Politico EU More