Court orders AstraZeneca to deliver 50 million doses to EU by September

(Update 1: Adds detail)

London/Brussels, Jun 18 (EFE).- A Belgian court on Friday ordered AstraZeneca to urgently deliver 50 million doses of its vaccine to the European Union by September this year, far less than the 300 million the bloc had filed for.

Both the European Commission and the Anglo-Swedish pharmaceutical company claimed the fast-tracked ruling, which ordered the delivery of 80 million doses — 30 million of which have already been received —, as a victory.

“This decision confirms the position of the Commission: AstraZeneca did not live up to the commitments it made in the contract. It is good to see that an independent judge confirms this,” European Commission president Ursula von der Leyen said in a statement.

The Anglo-Swedish firm had committed to delivering 300 million doses to the EU’s 27 countries by the end of June, as per a contract penned in August 2020. The company, however, revised the target down to around 100 million earlier this year following production problems.

“The judge’s decision on the requested interim measures is based on the fact that AstraZeneca committed a serious breach (‘faute lourde’) of its contractual obligations with the EU,” the Commission said.

In the event AstraZeneca should not comply with the delivery deadline, the pharmaceutical company will have to pay €10 per dose not delivered.

AstraZeneca General Counsel Jeffrey Pott said in a statement: “We are pleased with the Court’s order. AstraZeneca has fully complied with its agreement with the European Commission and we will continue to focus on the urgent task of supplying an effective vaccine.”

The company said more than 80 million doses will have been delivered to the EU by the end of the month. EFE


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