AstraZeneca says it'll have no vaccine supply shortfall in second quarter. But EU is wary

WION Web Team
London, London, UK (Great Britain) Published: Feb 25, 2021, 05:19 PM(IST)

AstraZeneca Covid vaccine Photograph:( Reuters )

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According to a report in Reuters, AstraZeneca is expected to deliver less than half the COVID-19 vaccines it was contracted to supply the European Union in the second quarter.

AstraZeneca has assured it will have no shortfall of vaccine supply in second quarter of 2021, adding it will deliver 180 million Covid vaccines to Europe, including 20 million to Italy.

But EU officials remain wary about the supply.

According to a report in Reuters, AstraZeneca is expected to deliver less than half the COVID-19 vaccines it was contracted to supply the European Union in the second quarter.

Lorenzo Wittum, CEO and chairman of AstraZeneca in Italy, told daily Il Corriere della Sera that Italy would receive more than 5 million shots by the end of March, fewer than the 8 million previously agreed, leading to a total of 25 million doses by June.

The Italian health ministry on February 12 revised its vaccination plan, lowering its expected doses from AstraZeneca in the second quarter to about 10 million from 18 million seen in a provisional plan in January.

In a statement on Tuesday the company said it aimed to deliver 180 million doses to the EU in the second quarter, half from factories outside Europe.

The EU has, however on its part, been in talks with the company to ensure "timely deliveries of sufficient number of doses."

Even if AstraZeneca delivered 180 million doses in the second quarter, it would still miss its contractual obligations to deliver 300 million shots by the end of June if it does not ramp up supplies in the first quarter which have been cut to 40 million doses from 90 million, and deliver 30 million doses due from December.

(with inputs from Reuters)

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