Bulgaria says 7 EU countries back its call to scrap contract for Covid-19 vaccines

Bulgaria’s caretaker government voted unanimously on March 8 to call for the European Commission to terminate the contract with Pfizer-BioNTech for the purchase and supply of vaccines against Covid-19, caretaker Health Minister Assen Medzhidiev said.

The other option was to take into account the needs of the EU member states, to request specific quantities, with a specific expiration date, and to pay after delivery, Medzhidiev said.

Bulgaria will put this position at a meeting of EU health ministers to be held on March 14 in Brussels.

“We are categorical in this position, with which we protect the state interest. We were also supported by the Minister of Health of the Republic of Poland, and in recent days we received support from six more EU member states,” Medzhidiev said.

On February 27, Medzhidiev said that more than 1.3 million doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine against Covid-19 delivered to Bulgaria have been scrapped, and in all so far the country has scrapped just more than 2.3 million doses of vaccines against Covid-19.

In the current year 2023, nearly 2.8 million doses are to be scrapped, Medzhidiev said.

With anti-vaxxer sentiment high in Bulgaria, and in spite of credible qualified medical specialists and institutions emphasising the benefits of vaccination, the country has a rate of completed vaccinations against Covid-19 of only about 30 per cent.

(Photo: EC Audiovisual Service)

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