Will Not Join EU's COVID-19 Vaccine Scheme, Says UK.

Will Not Join EU's COVID-19 Vaccine Scheme, Says UK

Media reports suggest UK has also held talks with GSK and Sanofi over a supply deal. (File)

London:

Britain has turned down the chance to join a 2.4 billion euro ($2.7 billion) European Union plan to secure advance purchases of promising COVID-19 vaccines, saying the EU would not allow it any role in decision-making.

"The UK government has decided on this occasion not to join this internal EU initiative, but given our shared interest in ensuring that vaccines are available to all, we are committed to strengthening our collaboration with the EU outside the framework," Britain's ambassador to the EU, Tim Barrow, said.

Before making its decision, it had assessed whether the advantages of the European bloc's bargaining power to strike deals with international drug companies would outweigh the fact that Britain would have little control over strategy.

With the highest coronavirus death count in Europe, Britain is struggling to reopen its economy and will end a status quo transition period with the EU at the end of this year.

Earlier this year, Britain failed to join an EU procurement programme for ventilators due to what officials described as a communications issue.

Barrow said joining the EU scheme would have required Britain to end its own talks with manufacturers, and it would have been given no voice over "which manufacturers to negotiate with, or the price, volume and delivery schedule negotiated".

With a global death count of more than 550,000 and a virus that is still on the march, leading governments are locked in an race to secure supplies of vaccines in a desperate attempt to get their economies working again.

Britain has already struck a deal to secure 100 million doses of an experimental vaccine that has been developed by the University of Oxford and licensed to British drugmaker AstraZeneca.

Media reports suggest it has also held talks with GSK and Sanofi over a supply deal.

The talks with the EU had represented a test of whether the two parties could work together to tackle international emergencies after Brexit. The EU said prior to the announcement that a decision by Britain to reject the scheme would not affect talks it was having with drugmakers.

Under the EU plan, the bloc wants to buy or commit to buy promising vaccines before they are ready, taking the risk of potential clinical failures. In exchange, it would get priority access to the shots.

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

Comments

Related news

Venezuela sentences ex-U.S. special forces soldiers to 20 years over attack on president

Lawyers for the former Green Berets, Luke Denman and Airan Berry, said they were barred from the secretive jailhouse proceedings Friday night in what they consider a violation of their constitutional rights to a defence.

‘I regret all the deaths,’ Brazil’s Bolsonaro says as over 100,000 die from coronavirus.

The nation of 210 million people has been reporting an average of more than 1,000 daily deaths from the pandemic since late May and reported 905 for the latest 24-hour period.

A New Brunswick man was FaceTiming with his family in Beirut.

Tuesday's blast devastated much of the city including its port, killing nearly 160 people and injuring almost 6,000. As of Saturday, dozens were still missing.

Protests erupt across Poland against country’s government’s anti-LGBTQ2 stance.

The protests came a day after LGBT rights supporters in Warsaw scuffled with police who arrested a transgender activist, Malgorzata Szutowicz.

Trump Signs Orders Extending Economic Relief For Americans Amid Pandemic.

President Donald Trump on Saturday signed executive orders extending economic relief to Americans after his Republican party and opposition Democrats failed to reach agreement on a new stimulus...

By continuing to browse World News (UAZMI), you acknowledge that you have read the Terms of Use and agree to the use of cookies