Published on: Amended:
The European Union has launched legal action against pharmaceutical giant AstraZeneca for insufficient delivery of its coronavirus vaccine, the European Commission announced on Monday.
“The commission launched a legal action last Friday against the company AstraZeneca on the basis of violations of the advance purchase agreement”, spokesman of the European Commission Stefan De Keersmaecker.
The lawsuit was launched on behalf of the 27 Member States of the Union, he added.
The EU executive body said it was suing AstraZeneca for failing to honor a contract to supply vaccine doses and for not having a “reliable” plan to ensure timely deliveries.
As part of the contract, the company pledged to use its “best reasonable efforts” to deliver 180 million doses of vaccine to the EU in the second quarter of this year, for a total of 300 million over the period. from December to June.
But the company said in a March 12 statement that it would aim to provide only a third. A week later, the European Commission sent a legal letter to the company in the first step of a formal dispute resolution process.
>> calls for ‘coherent’ EU policy on AstraZeneca as public confidence weakens
“Certain conditions of the contract were not met and the company was unable to come up with a reliable strategy to ensure delivery of the doses on time,” the EU spokesperson said.
“We want to ensure the rapid delivery of a sufficient number of doses to which European citizens are entitled and which have been promised on the basis of the contract,” he added.
(UKTN with UKTN, REUTERS)