Dr Veronique Trillet-Lenoir is a member of the European Parliament’s environment, public health and food safety committee. The French politician de
Dr Veronique Trillet-Lenoir is a member of the European Parliament’s environment, public health and food safety committee. The French politician defended the European Union’s export ban threats by putting the blame on pharmaceutical companies for not fulfilling their coronavirus contracts. Despite Dr Trillet-Lenoir’s attempts to defend the actions of the European Commission, she was challenged on the bloc “failing” millions of EU citizens during a global health crisis.
Channel 4’s reporter Fatima Manji: “Can I just put it to you though that it’s the Commission that’s failed European citizens here by not finalising the contract with AstraZeneca?”
The MEP replied: “The deal has been completed, three million doses are secured for European citizens on the basis of a contract between the Commission and AstraZeneca, there is nothing to blame for.”
Ms Manji followed up and said: “Can I put it to you that the EU has been accused of vaccine protectionism in a pandemic, that’s something to be ashamed of isn’t it?”
The French politician said in response: “Well, it’s a shame in every country, the problem is that we are facing a worldwide pandemic where we should really play a collective game.
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“Instead of what we are facing some kind of vaccine nationalism and a fight for the vaccine.
“I do hope that as many people in the world, including the UK, will be vaccinated because if only a few are protected then nobody is.
“So we have to fight against pharmaceutical firms playing with that.”
Earlier in the show, Ms Manji asked Ms Trillet-Lenoir if she believes AstraZeneca is prioritising the UK because the country is willing to pay a higher price.
Ms Kyriakides said: “This new schedule is not acceptable to the European Union.
“The European Union has pre-financed the development of the vaccine and the production and wants to see the return.
“The European Union wants to know exactly which doses have been produced by AstraZeneca and where exactly so far and if or to whom they have been delivered.
“The answers of the company have not been satisfactory so far, the European Union wants the ordered and pre-financed doses to be delivered as soon as possible and we want our contract to be fully fulfilled.”
AstraZeneca’s CEO, Pascal Soriot, says the reason for their UK priority is because they paid for more and paid for it earlier than the EU.