The European Union has exported more than a billion doses of anti-Covid vaccines in ten months to more than 150 countries, or half of the doses produced in Europe, the European Commission said on Monday through the voice of its president, Ursula van der Leyen. Satisfied, the German stresses that “very clearly, the EU is the world’s leading exporter of vaccines”.
In detail, 87 million doses were notably sent to low-income countries thanks to the Covax solidarity mechanism. The EU will give “in the next few months” at least 500 million additional doses to these vulnerable countries, “but other countries must also redouble their efforts,” added the chief executive.
However, Brussels still refuses to lift the patents on vaccines, claimed by several countries (United States, India, South Africa…) and NGOs, to produce vaccines in more countries. But the European Union has its own control mechanism. Thus, to avoid any shortages, exports must be approved by the exporting country. A measure supposed to prevent AstraZeneca from honoring other orders before those of the EU. The laboratory is also the only one to have seen an export of doses being refused (to Australia), for more than 2,600 green lights to 56 countries.