European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen announced on Wednesday that it has reached an agreement with BioNTech/Pfizer to deliver 50 million doses of the vaccine in the second quarter, and announced that it will start buying from the manufacturer. A third contract for 1.8 billion doses of vaccine is negotiated in the next two years.
“I am pleased to announce that we have reached an agreement with BioNTech/Pfizer to expedite the delivery of 50 million doses, which will take place in the second quarter instead of the fourth quarter,” von Delane said.
She added that the 50 million doses of vaccine will be delivered starting this month. As the delivery speed accelerates, BioNTech/Pfizer will ship a total of 250 million doses of vaccine in the second quarter. These 50 million doses will be distributed to member states in proportion to the population.
Von der Leyen confirmed that the European Commission will rely on messenger RNA-based vaccines in the future, which is a “new technology that has proven its worth.”
The President of the European Commission said: “We are now negotiating a third contract with BioNTech/Pfizer. The contract envisages the procurement of 1.8 billion doses between 2021 and 2023.”
Earlier, the German Ministry of Environmental Protection Peter Liese announced that the committee will no longer purchase vector vaccines produced by AstraZeneca and Johnson & Johnson, but will rely on Messenger RNA (mRNA) vaccines produced by BioNTech/Pfizer, Moderna and CureVac in the future.
The chairman of the committee said that so far, a total of 126 million doses of vaccine have been provided to the European Union, 100 million doses have been administered, and 27 million people have received two doses of vaccine.
The President of the European Commission said: “The sooner we achieve the goal of vaccinating 70% of adults in the European Union, the better our chances of containing the virus.”