The new covid-19 epidemic continues to spread in Europe. The theme of delayed delivery of Pfizer vaccine is igniting public opinion on the occasion of large-scale vaccination in various countries.
On the 15th, Pfizer of the United States and new biotechnology of Germany issued a joint announcement, saying that due to the need to “adjust the production process” of Pfizer’s production base in Pierce, Belgium, the delivery of new crown vaccines to EU countries in the next three to four weeks will be affected.
This unilateral “breach of commitment” has aroused strong reactions from many European countries. Sweden, Denmark, Finland, Lithuanian, Latvian and Estonian wrote to the European Commission asking it to put pressure on Pfizer and biotechnology to ensure timely, stable and transparent vaccine delivery.
Under pressure, Pfizer has shortened the delay to one week, which will return to normal from January 25.
This tension continues to heat up. Italy, Poland and other countries have spoken one after another. If Pfizer fails to fulfill its promise, it may resort to legal means.
Vaccine factories in small towns in Belgium
Pierce used to be an obscure Belgian town, but now it has become the focus of the media spotlight.
One of the only two Pfizer vaccine factories in the world is here, and the other is in kalamazu, Michigan. In theory, Pierce’s vaccines are mainly supplied to other markets outside the United States.
The reason given by Pfizer is to greatly increase the delivery volume in the second quarter and raise the production target for the whole year of 2021 from 1.3 billion doses to 2 billion doses.
Pfizer vaccine factory in Peirce, Belgium
Although Pfizer’s vaccine supply is not completely cut off, many EU countries have indicated that they have to moderately adjust the vaccination plan within at least two weeks.
In Belgium, for example, Pfizer should have delivered 100000 doses this week, but in fact it only delivered 83000 doses. As a result, some parts of Belgium have to reduce or completely interrupt the vaccination of medical staff in order to give priority to the vaccination of high-risk groups in nursing homes.
For this sudden situation, EU Member States also have some feelings. French state secretary in charge of EU affairs Boehner said in an interview on the 22nd that the EU’s vaccination strategy can not only be based on one vaccine.
As of January this year, the European Commission has signed six purchase intention contracts for new crown vaccines or candidate vaccines, with a total amount of 2.3 billion doses. However, only Pfizer and Modena’s vaccines have been approved for listing.
From the perspective of vaccine orders, Pfizer vaccine in the United States topped the list with 600 million doses, which also made it difficult for EU countries to get rid of the dependence on this vaccine in the near future.
Italy: we’re fed up with Pfizer’s promises
For Europe, fighting the epidemic is a race at the same time.
Covid-19, Commissioner of Italy new crown emergency committee, Domenico Arcuri said Pfizer Inc unilaterally decided to reduce the vaccine dose to Italy by 29%. The vaccine dose that should be delivered to Italy next week will also be cut by 20%.
Alcuri said he was fed up with Pfizer’s pledge that what Italy needs now is a vaccine.
Domenico Arcuri, Commissioner of covid-19 Italy new crown emergency committee
Affected by Pfizer’s decision, the daily average number of vaccinations in the country has dropped from 80000 to 28000, a drop of nearly two-thirds. The vaccine dose allocated to individual regions has even decreased by 60% compared with the expected.
Alcuri said that the Italian government and the major regions have reached an agreement to assess the possibility of protecting the rights of Italian citizens through legal means and may take formal action in the next few days.
Lazar, head of the Italian Sicily regional health department, also said he supported the government in taking legal action against Pfizer. At the same time, he also appealed to the European drug administration and EU agencies to act quickly on the premise of ensuring the safety of the vaccine.
He pointed out that what people want to see is the light at the end of the tunnel, not a mirage.
President of Health Department of Sicily, Italy
In addition, the Polish government is also considering following up the measures that the Italian government may take against Pfizer. Poland hopes Pfizer will finally fulfill the contract, and if Pfizer fails to make up for the shortage of vaccines as promised, a decision on legal proceedings may be made next month, Polish government spokesman Muller said on the 22nd.
French state secretary in charge of EU affairs Boehner also said that if Pfizer fails to fulfill its promise, that is, the delivery volume will return to normal from January 25, France may impose sanctions on Pfizer of the United States and German biotechnology companies.
Meanwhile, the European drug administration is expected to give a “green light” to the new crown vaccine produced by Oxford University and British AstraZeneca on January 29, but AstraZeneca issued a warning that the number of vaccines delivered to the European Union is expected to be “lower than originally expected”.
The European Commission set a unified goal on the 19th that Member States should vaccinate 70% of the adult population by the summer of this year. Now the delivery of new crown vaccine has been delayed repeatedly, which will bring great challenges to achieve this goal.
Chinese vaccines infuse confidence into global fight against epidemic
At a time when it is hard to get a single dose of new vaccine in Europe and the United States, China is taking practical actions to fulfill its commitment to regard vaccine as a global public product, injecting confidence into the fight against the epidemic in many countries around the world.
On January 16, the first batch of new crown vaccines produced by Sinopharm group arrived in the capital of Serbia
In the middle of this month, the first batch of new crown vaccines produced by Sinopharm group arrived in the capital of Serbia. President vuccic of Serbia personally went to the airport to welcome the vaccines. On January 19, health minister ronchar and vice premier and Defense Minister of Serbia also became the first batch of Chinese vaccinators in the country.
On January 19, health minister longchar of Serbia became the first Chinese vaccinator in Serbia
Guyash galgay, Minister of the Hungarian prime minister’s office, also said that Hungary will continue to negotiate with China and Russia on the purchase of additional vaccines due to the slow supply of vaccines allocated to Hungary by the European Union.
Vaccines entering the EU market must be licensed by the European drug administration, but under special circumstances, EU member states can issue their own licenses for use within their own country.
With the increasing number of new coronavirus infections and deaths, time is life. Vaccination is an important means to overcome the epidemic situation. It is an urgent need for many countries to vaccinate as soon as possible.
The new covid-19 epidemic is still rampant around the world, and infectious and fatal variants will make epidemic prevention and control more difficult. The disputes between Pfizer new crown vaccine and European countries due to delayed delivery not only exposed the shortage and shortcomings of production capacity of some vaccine enterprises, but also highlighted the importance of abiding by the promise.
The strong grass is known by the strong wind, and the responsibility for the epidemic situation can be seen. Only through joint efforts and responsible practical actions can the international community help to overcome the epidemic at an early date.