April 10, 2021

Lakefront Hartwell

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Vaccine shortage in the EU: Is the export ban coming now?

Status: March 19, 2021 2:21 pm.

The tone of the controversy with Great Britain over the export of AstraZeneca vaccines is increasingly diminishing. EU President Van der Leyne is now threatening even an export embargo.

The shortage of vaccines in Europe has sparked a heated debate over a ban on the export of the vaccine from the manufacturer AstraZeneca. In a conversation with several European newspapers, EU President Ursula van der Leyen called for closer cooperation. “I put on the table the opposite question of supplies, and now we will discuss with governments in preparation for the EU summit, what tools can we use to achieve this exchange,” he told the “Weld” and the Italian newspaper “Republica”.

At the same time, he pointed out that AstraZeneca had agreed on a contractual basis to provide vaccinations to the EU from European and UK facilities. “But so far we have not received any supply from Great Britain, while AstraZeneca’s European production has left the EU for Great Britain. AstraZeneca must also deliver from Great Britain to Europe,” said Van der Leyen.

Guaranteed mutual supply flow

Europe has exported the vaccine in 33 countries, some of which produce vaccines such as South Korea. The demand for mutual flow of supplies should now be discussed, the commission chairman said. Van der Lion was already on Wednesday Announced in dispute with Great Britain and the United States, The European Union (EU) is examining whether exports to countries with high vaccination rates but not contributing to vaccine production are still commensurate. For example, Chile has already vaccinated 40 percent of its population and uses vaccines that are widely produced in Europe, primarily the Astrogenega product.

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The Cambridge-based company has repeatedly announced supply cuts to the EU. Germany has also been affected. In this country, about 15 million vaccines will be provided by the company in the second quarter, according to Federal Health Minister Jens Spann. “This is actually two to three million doses less than we expected.”

Use existing emergency laws

The EU Commission has now responded to this emergency. In doing so, it may also refer to existing emergency laws. According to lawyers, these laws authorize EU member states to closely control the production and distribution of vaccines. When asked about this, Van der Leyen said he did not want to reject any option at this time. The threat, aimed primarily at AstraZeneca, sends its vaccine from Brussels airports around the world, but does not deliver on its delivery promises to the EU.

So Charles Michael, the head of the European Council, already proposed in January that Article 122 of the European Convention be implemented. At the time, the Bioentech / Pfizer Federation announced that they could offer less. According to the article, emergency measures can be taken “if there are significant problems with the delivery of certain products”.

The original purpose was to ensure that the EU could assist individual member states quickly and unofficially in economic emergencies. However, legal experts believe that the article could explain why states restrict vaccine production for a limited period of time or force manufacturers to issue patents for other manufacturers. Because the epidemic is a severe emergency.

Economists warn of export ban

The British government has criticized the EU’s threat to ban the export of vaccines. Building Minister Robert Genrich told television broadcaster Sky that he was “surprised and disappointed” by the reports. Van der Leyen made a clear promise to Prime Minister Boris Johnson earlier this year that there would be no such export restrictions and that the EU would abide by its contractual obligations. Great Britain wants to do the same. “I hope and expect the EU to stick to the end of its agreement.”

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The World Economic Forum (IfW) warns that exports of vaccines will be banned. “Export sanctions are a very bad idea,” said Gabriel Felbermeier, Reuters’ Ifw chairman. “Export restrictions exacerbate the real problem: very few vaccines are produced worldwide,” says Felbermeyer. Instead of protectionism, cross-border cooperation is needed to solve problems quickly. A global approach is needed to fight an epidemic.

The EU is also “heavily dependent” on imports from other countries for the production of vaccines. “I can not imagine what would happen if trade partners restrict the export of intermediate products that are important for their part.”