EU starts legal action against AstraZeneca over vaccine shortfalls.
AstraZeneca said it would “strongly defend itself in court” and highlighted its supply of 50m Covid vaccine doses to European countries as Brussels launched legal action against the pharmaceutical company over delivery shortfalls.
The Anglo-Swedish firm said it regretted the decision by the European commission to start a legal case over alleged breaches of an advance purchase agreement.
AstraZeneca was able to deliver only about a quarter of the expected 120m doses in the first quarter of this year because of production problems at a plant in Belgium, leading to angry accusations from Brussels.
Officials in the EU’s executive branch were particularly enraged by the refusal of the company to divert doses made in two plants in the UK. AstraZeneca’s chief executive, Pascal Soriot, had claimed he was contractually obliged to provide doses made in Oxford and Staffordshire to UK residents in the first instance.