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UK and EU are working on clearing the path for vaccine export/import

A bailiff of the European Parliament wearing protective mask and gloves works during a mini plenary session of European Parliament in Brussels, on April 16, 2020 amid the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic, caused by the novel coronavirus. - Due to the coronavirus pandemic, plenary session is reduced to one day and mainly operated as a video conference. (Photo by JOHN THYS / AFP) (Photo by JOHN THYS/AFP via Getty Images)

The European Union and the United Kingdom are about to conclude an agreement to prevent EU countries from blocking the export of coronavirus vaccines to the United Kingdom, reports The Times on Saturday. The deal was supposed to be made this weekend.

The agreement will no longer allow the EU to threaten to ban the export of vaccines from the manufacturer Pfizer/BioNTech to the United Kingdom. In exchange for that promise, the United Kingdom will refrain from ordering the delivery of AstraZeneca vaccines that would be exported from the Netherlands in the long term.

The slow delivery of coronavirus vaccines to the EU is increasingly leading to a conflict between London and Brussels. Central to the most recent argument about the vaccinations is a pharmaceutical factory in the Netherlands that, according to British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, has to make AstraZeneca vaccines for the British. That is disputed on the continent. The factory of the company Halix in Leiden was officially approved by the European Medicines Agency EMA on Friday.

The EU, for its part, believes that Britain should supply more, inter alia to help compensate for delayed deliveries from manufacturer AstraZeneca. AstraZeneca has been supplying the EU with far fewer vaccines than agreed for months.

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