EU to get 107 million COVID doses by end of March, 30 million from AstraZeneca

Vial labelled “AstraZeneca coronavirus disease (COVID-19) vaccine” placed on displayed EU flag is seen in this illustration picture

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – European Union states are expected to receive 107 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines by the end of March, an EU Commission spokeswoman said on Wednesday, hitting an earlier target but far below initial plans.

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Under contracts signed with drugmakers, the bloc had expected to receive 120 million doses by the end of March from Anglo-Swedish firm AstraZeneca alone and tens of millions more doses from Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna.

But after major cuts from AstraZeneca, the EU had revised down its target until the end of March to about 100 million doses.

The Commission spokeswoman told a news conference that AstraZeneca was expected to deliver 29.8 million doses by Wednesday, in line with its revised-down goal.

Pfizer-BioNTech will deliver 67.5 million doses and Moderna nearly 10 million, figures that the EU has said are in line with their initial commitments.

The EU expects a major ramp-up of deliveries in the second quarter that it says will be sufficient to inoculate at least 70% of its adult population by July, and speed up its so far slow vaccination drive.

(Reporting by Francesco Guarascio; Editing by Steve Orlofsky)