News – AU – Europe blocked 250000 AstraZeneca vaccine doses for Australia

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London: Officials in Europe have the shipment of 250000 doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine to Australia blocked to spark a major diplomatic dispute

The decision marks the first time the European Commission has exercised its powers over whether vaccines manufactured by Pfizer and AstraZeneca on the continent can leave their territory

The export controls, widely criticized as a dangerous example of “vaccine nationalism”, were hastily drafted in January after the drug giants warned that supplies to Europe would be cut in the coming months due to production delays

More than 150 international deliveries have been approved in the last few weeks without any problems, but Italy has now spoken out against delivery to Australia. Rome’s objection has been approved by the European Commission

The Italian Foreign Ministry justified the ban on the fact that Australia was classified as “non-vulnerable” at this point in the coronavirus pandemic, it also said AstraZeneca had attempted to send a “high number” of cans to Australia, compared with the amount delivered to Italy and other countries on the continent

AstraZeneca was informed on Tuesday of this week that the broadcast would be blocked This raises questions about whether the Australian government knew there was a problem but has not said anything publicly in the hopes that the stalemate could be resolved

Italy’s decision was not disclosed by the company’s global chief executive Pascal Soriot during a series of interviews he conducted with Australian media on Thursday

The first 300000 doses of Oxford-AstraZeneca University’s European-made COVID-19 vaccine landed on Australian soil last Sunday morning. About 50 million AstraZeneca doses are made in a Melbourne factory, but 38 million must come from overseas, mostly from Europe / p>

Australia is seen as collateral damage in an ongoing war of words between European officials and AstraZeneca, a British-Swedish company, the European Union is unhappy that the company has not dispensed the expected number of doses

The newly appointed Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi criticized the export of vaccines during a recent meeting of EU leaders in late January

However, millions of AstraZeneca cans have been stored across Europe because some citizens refuse to ingest them

French President Emmanuel Macron mistakenly called it “quasi ineffective” for the elderly, a remark widely seen as detrimental to the critical public confidence in the bumps

A number of nations in Europe said earlier this year that the vaccine should not be given to people over 65 due to a lack of trial data, but most are reversing that decision now that the vaccine is proving hugely successful in the UK

The EU previously referred to export controls as a “transparency and authorization mechanism” The regulation on which the measure is based states that the EU does not intend “not to restrict exports more than is strictly necessary”

Under the system, Pfizer and AstraZeneca must seek approval from the countries where the vaccine was made before the bumps can be flown overseas

If the country decides to refuse the request it must consult the European Commission The European Commission has the power to oppose the country’s decision but did not do so on delivery to Australia

But the approach has sparked an outcry from a number of experts and officials who believe it sets a dangerous precedent in so-called “vaccine nationalism”

It has also been seen as an attempt by the bloc to find a culprit for the troubled rollout that lags far behind that of the UK

AstraZeneca currently manufactures the vaccine in the Netherlands and Belgium, but uses partners in Germany and Italy to fill and package the drug into vials

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AstraZeneca, vaccine, Philippines, Germany

News – AU – Europe blocks 250000 AstraZeneca vaccine doses for Australia

Source: https://www.smh.com.au/world/europe/europe-blocks-250-000-astrazeneca-doses-bound-for-australia-20210305-p577z3.html