The EU intends to maintain the contractually guaranteed delivery of vaccine doses. Brussels is now opening a second lawsuit against Astrazeneca.
Brussels (dpa) – In the legal dispute over Astrazeneca’s backlog of delivery for corona vaccines, the European Commission is now officially pursuing a second legal proceeding against the British-Swedish manufacturer.
Following the urgent proceedings, which are already underway, a main case from September 24 will be about the exact legal investigation of contractual obligations and possible violations, a spokesman for the committee said Tuesday.
However, the purpose of both procedures is the same: the EU wants to get Astrazeneca to deliver the contractually promised vaccine doses. In concrete terms, this will initially involve approximately 90 million doses of corona vaccine: the company delivered 30 million doses of vaccine to the EU in the first quarter, instead of the guaranteed 120 million. Ultimately, fines are conceivable, said the spokesman. In the urgent procedure, however, the Commission first wants to obtain a provisional decision laying down its contractual claims. This will be heard in a court in Brussels on May 26.
In total, the EU had ordered 300 million cans from Astrazeneca by the end of June. However, according to the latest forecasts, it should only be 100 million doses by then. Astrazeneca considers the dispute unfounded because the company interprets the contractual obligations differently from the Commission.
EU Industry Commissioner Thierry Breton said last weekend that the contract with Astrazeneca was not renewed after June. The Astrazeneca vaccine is now only used to a limited extent in some EU countries as it has been associated with very rare cases of brain thrombosis. However, it is still unrestrictedly approved by the EU Medicines Agency (EMA).
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