AstraZeneca has cut its forecast for COVID vaccine shipments to the European Union in the first quarter of 2021 to 30 million doses, a third of its contractual obligations, as well as a quarter reduction from last month’s obligations.
The agency writes that the deficit will be the next blow to the EU’s vaccination plans, which are hampered by repeated delays in vaccine supplies and the slow introduction of vaccination in some countries.
The company handed over the document to EU representatives on March 10. It indicates that the company now plans to deliver 30.1 million doses by the end of March and another 20 million in April. The document does not contain forecasts for May and June. Under the contract, AstraZeneca undertook to provide the EU with 180 million doses in April-June, 300 million doses in total from December.
In turn, Romania suspended vaccination with one batch of AstraZeneca vaccine for a week. The National Coordination Committee for Vaccination (CNCAV) reported that more than 77,000 doses of AstraZeneca vaccine have already been used in Romania, leaving more than 4,200 doses.
“As a precaution, it was decided to temporarily suspend the use of other doses until the evaluation of the European Medicines Agency has been completed,” CNCAV said.
A similar decision was made by Thailand, where the vaccination of Prime Minister Prayut Chan-Ocha and several members of the government with AstraZeneca was postponed, Bloomberg reports.
Thailand was due to start vaccination against coronavirus with AstraZeneca, but has now been postponed for a maximum of two weeks. This vaccine accounts for 61 million of the 63 million doses ordered by the country’s authorities. At the same time, residents at risk will continue to be vaccinated with the Chinese drug Sinovac.
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