EU Plans to Tighten COVID Vaccine Export Controls

The European Union will tighten its system on exporting Covid-19 vaccines, in a move to ensure that supplies inside the bloc are sufficient.

This comes after Europe encountered issues with AstraZeneca, failing to deliver sufficient doses to the EU this month which led to the blocking of the vaccine export to Australia.

The EU said it will adopt measures to its export system under the principles of “proportionality and reciprocity.”

Before a vaccine shipment is authorized, the EU will consider the destination country’s inoculation campaign, and countries who currently fare better in terms of the campaign may be refused authorization. 

Moreover, the 27-bloc is also keen on being reciprocated for EU-made vaccines, such as in the form of other doses or raw ingredients for its manufacturing.

The EU Commission will then evaluate based on the criteria, along with the possible effects of the request made on the agreement between the EU and the company. 

The bloc will then decide the export authorization based on the commission’s evaluation. 

Some 17 countries who were exempted from the regulations before, will now be included along with Norway and Switzerland. 

Meanwhile, low to middle-income countries benefited by the global COVAX program will still be exempted. 

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