“We are in Europe for two months behind the original plan,” Soriot said. He admitted that there were problems in the UK at first. “But the agreement with the British was signed three months before the agreement with Brussels. We had three more months to solve the problems, “he said.
The European Union criticizes AstraZenka for failing to meet the volume of vaccine deliveries for the first period, as agreed by both parties.
Soriot claims that Brussels wanted deliveries at more or less the same time as Britain, even though it signed the contract three months earlier. “We promised to try, but we did not commit to the contract,” he added.
The company can produce 100 million vaccines per month. Last August, the EU agreed to buy 300 million benefits for 750 million euros (almost 20 billion crowns) and to buy another 100 million benefits. Britain contracted 100 million benefits for 84 million pounds (2.5 billion crowns) last May. The US also secured 300 million benefits for $ 1.2 billion (35 billion crowns) in May.
“Of course, we are increasing production and Europe will receive 17 percent of this production in February. We are constantly expanding production, it will improve, but it will take time, “said Soriot.
They modify the vaccine due to mutations
According to the company, the current reduction in supply is also due to the fact that the vaccine is being adjusted for coronavirus mutations. The reduction in deliveries by the end of March should be up to 60 percent. Instead of 80 million benefits, EU countries should receive only 31 million benefits by the end of March. However, the company is also reducing deliveries outside Europe.
It is still vaccinated in the Union with the vaccines of Moderna and Pfizer / BioNTech. The European Medicines Agency (EMA) could recommend the substance for conditional use on Friday, making AstraZeneka the third vaccine in the Union after approval by the European Commission.
The United Kingdom approved the use of AstraZeneka in late December. In the US, approval is expected in April as it is expected to prove effective in the elderly. The German media recently stated that the efficiency of people over the age of 65 is only eight percent, which the company denied.
Britain may succeed in fulfilling its intention to vaccinate citizens from the four most at-risk groups by mid-February. “Britain will vaccinate maybe 28 or 30 million people by March. The prime minister’s goal is to have 15 million people vaccinated by mid-February and now they are (British) at 6.5 million (vaccinated). So it’s coming, “Soriot said.