ITALY is Set to Take Legal Action Against AstraZeneca for Vaccine Distribution Reduction
Italy will take legal action against the pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca for reducing the batch of coronavirus vaccines, as it has already done with Pfizer and BioNtech for the same reasons, Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte has announced.
“We will use all instruments and all legal initiatives, as we are already doing with Pfizer-BioNtech, to claim respect for contractual commitments and protect our national community,” he said on his social networks.
Conte’s announcement comes after AstraZeneca warned the EU that it will cut vaccine supplies by 60 per cent in the first quarter of 2021 due to production problems, but would not give any specific details apparently.
This sudden announcement comes hot on the tails of last week’s move by Pfizer and partner BioNTech to slow down their supply to the EU, blaming the need to work on ramping up the distribution.
The Italian Minister of Health, Roberto Speranza, has met with the directors of AstraZeneca in the country and they have confirmed the reduction of shipments due to production problems of the compound.
Italy estimates that it will receive 3.4 million doses instead of eight as stipulated in the first quarter of the year, once the Astrazeneca vaccine receives the approval of the European Medicines Agency (EMA), which should happen before January 29.
“All this is unacceptable, our vaccination plan, approved by Parliament and ratified by the State-Regions Conference, has been prepared based on contractual commitments freely signed by pharmaceutical companies and the European Commission,” he stated.
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