Photo: CHAMILA KARUNARATHNE / EPA
Australia has sharply criticized the delivery stop for corona vaccine from the European Union.
"We are of course disappointed and frustrated with this decision, but that is also the reason why we have double coverage," said Treasury Secretary Simon Birmingham on Sky News on Friday.
"We have commissioned up to 150 million doses of vaccine, including 50 million doses to be produced here in Australia," he said.
The world is currently in a fairly unexplored area, so it is not surprising that "some countries will tear the rule book apart."
According to EU circles, Italy had prevented the delivery of 250,000 doses of vaccine from the British-Swedish manufacturer AstraZeneca to Australia - and thus for the first time stopped the export of corona vaccine from the European Union to a third country.
At the end of January, the European Union started export controls for corona vaccines.
The focus is on manufacturers who do not meet their EU delivery obligations.
Now it's AstraZeneca.
The basis is an export control system introduced at the end of January due to the shortage of vaccines.
Accordingly, pharmaceutical companies with EU delivery obligations must apply for export permits for vaccines produced in the EU.
If manufacturers unlawfully disadvantage the EU in terms of delivery quantities, permits can be refused.
AstraZeneca does not meet the originally promised delivery volume to the EU in the first quarter, which has caused great resentment.
The EU member state in which the vaccines intended for export were produced is responsible for the export permits.
The Italian Foreign Minister Luigi Di Maio wrote on Facebook: »Australia is now regarded as a country that is 'not at risk' according to EU rules«.
The lock was "not a hostile act against Australia."
Australia has recorded around 29,000 coronavirus cases since the pandemic began - a significantly lower per capita rate than most developed countries.
The number of deaths is currently 909. Around 25 million people live in the country.
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