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Two new vaccine plants in the European Union | Europe | D.W.

The Holix vaccine factory in Leiden, the Netherlands, has received late approval from the European Pharmaceuticals Association (EMA). AstraZeneca has been producing at full speed there for several weeks. The British-Swedish team applied for EMA certification for the plant with delay. EU officials in Brussels could not be reached for comment.

But now the already-prepared AstraZeneca cans are about to be delivered quickly from Leiden. It is not clear what quantity is available there. EU Commissioner for Health Stella Kriakitz said the company should immediately fulfill its obligations in Brussels: “We expect the vaccines produced at this plant to be delivered to EU member states in the next few days. AstraZeneca’s contract commitment and obligations to European citizens.”

Problem case Astrogeneca

The EU Commission has accused the vaccine manufacturer of failing to comply with an agreement with the European Union. By the first half of 2021, 300 million vaccines should have been delivered to 27 EU countries. After a significant dispute with Brussels, AstraZeneca pledged only 100 million cans. According to the European Commission, only 13 million vials with the much-loved vaccine have been delivered to date. AstraZeneca’s execution of its distribution agreement with Great Britain is causing annoyance in Brussels.

Holix Vaccine Factory in Leiden: Millions of estrogenes are to be produced here

AstraZeneca’s next ship will contain 29 million vaccines, which Italian authorities discovered this week in a bottle facility near Rome. The company says the cans were manufactured by Hollix in Leiden and brought to Italy. There they waited for approval through quality control.

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This can now be done quickly as the Holix factory has all the necessary European approvals. Of the 29 million cans, about 16 will go to EU countries, according to AstraZeneca. The remaining 13 million is earmarked for the United Nations Kovacs Vaccine Initiative, which is to fund 92 poor countries.

The EMA in Amsterdam believes that the production and distribution of the estrogen vaccine in the EU can now be significantly increased. So far, AstraZeneca has three production facilities under contract, one in Belgium, one in the UK and one in the United States.

Reducing exports to Great Britain

With the new rules governing vaccine exports, the EU Commission can now ensure that any vaccine from AstraZeneca’s continental European plants is delivered to Great Britain and Northern Ireland. The UK has received 21 million doses of EU production over the past few months, the vaccine is also being manufactured in the UK and AstroGeneca has not fulfilled its agreements with the EU.

So EU heads of state and government decided to stop this. Until AstraZeneca fulfills its EU agreement, it will not export anything other than the recipients of the Kovacs initiative. In addition to Great Britain, Saudi Arabia, Canada and Australia also received vaccines from the European Union.

New plant for Bioendech-Pfizer

The European pharmaceutical company has approved another Cominer production facility for the biotech-Pfizer vaccine in the German city of Marburg. This means that this manufacturer can also expand its vaccine production. Bioendech-Pfizer is unlikely to be affected by export restrictions as supply agreements with the EU Commission have so far been finalized. In addition, the EMA now recommends that the Bioendech / Pfizer vaccine dose not be stored at minus 70 degrees as before, but at minus 15 to minus 25 degrees for two weeks. EMA announced that this will facilitate the practical use of the vaccine and expedite vaccination.

Medical professionals in Brussels have long called for this measure because, after all, this vaccine is widely used in the United States and is only stored at minus 15 degrees. With the plant in Marburg, Bioendech-Pfizer now has four factories in the EU. The company is expected to produce at least 500 million vaccines for EU countries by the end of this year.

Last week EMA already certified the new plant for the production of active material from the manufacturer of Modernna in Whistle, Switzerland. The pharmaceutical company announced that Moderna could also significantly increase its production for the EU.

The fourth manufacturer is manufacturing in Spain

EU Commissioner Theory Breton visits Johnson & Johnson’s fourth manufacturing facility in San Diego, Spain. Breton chaired the commission’s vaccination task force and promised that 55 million doses of vaccine would be shipped from the plant over the next three months. A further 120 million cans are expected to follow in the third quarter of the year. The Johnson & Johnson vaccine has the advantage that one injection is enough to protect against infection.

EU Vaccine Officer Theory Breton (Center) on a study tour to the factory in Moderna, Spain

EU Vaccine Officer Theory Breton (M): Exploration tour of the factory in Spain Moderna

According to Bretton, 52 pharmaceutical companies in the European Union now produce a variety of approved vaccines. By the end of this year, two to three billion vaccines are expected to be produced in the EU. This makes the region the largest vaccine manufacturer in the world.

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Meanwhile, French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Letrian continues to tease Great Britain. The British are very proud to have vaccinated so many people with the first dose. “Now you have a problem with the second dose,” Le Drian said in a radio interview. He noted the fact that due to export restrictions in the EU, the available vaccine would become scarce for the former member state of Great Britain.

The French Foreign Minister has accused British Prime Minister Boris Johnson of “threatening” that the British economy could react to export restrictions by reducing investment in the EU. This week, British newspapers accused the EU of “vaccine nationalism” and a “vaccine dispute” with the United Kingdom.

European pharmaceutical company EMA is currently reviewing the approval of the Russian vaccine “Sputnik V”. German Chancellor Angela Merkel has announced that Germany will use it if it is approved by the European Commission. The government spokesman did not accept political or ideological concerns. According to Merkel, it means “vaccinate, vaccinate, vaccinate.”