European Commission set to launch legal proceedings against AstraZeneca this week

The European Commission is getting ready to launch legal proceedings against vaccine producer AstraZeneca, POLITICO reports, citing five EU diplomats.

The Commission is reported to have raised the matter at a meeting of ambassadors on Wednesday, during which the majority of EU countries said they would support suing the company over complaints it massively failed to deliver pledged doses to the bloc.

One diplomat clarified that the point of the legal proceedings is to make it mandatory for AstraZeneca to provide the doses set out in its EU contract.

The EU member states must sign off on launching legal proceedings this week, POLITICO further reports.

In January, AstraZeneca announced that it would not be able to offer the bloc the number of doses initially anticipated. By the end of the first quarter, the company delivered 30 million doses to EU countries, rather than the 100 million doses pledged in its EU contract. The shortages severely hampered the vaccination campaigns across EU countries.

The company has projected it would deliver roughly 70 million doses by the end of the second quarter of the year, when it was supposed to have delivered the entire 300 million doses secured in the EU contract.

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