Monday, 21 December 2020
The European Commission will probably approve Pfizer-BioNTech’s Covid-19 vaccine on Monday evening, according to Commission President Ursula von der Leyen.
“It’s a decisive moment in our efforts to deliver safe and effective vaccines to Europeans,” von der Leyen tweeted in a reaction to the news that the European Medicines Agency (EMA) decided to recommend the vaccine.
“Now we will act fast. I expect a European Commission decision by this evening,” she added.
It’s a decisive moment in our efforts to deliver safe & effective vaccines to Europeans!
Now we will act fast. I expect a @EU_Commission decision by this evening.
— Ursula von der Leyen (@vonderleyen) December 21, 2020
Initially, it had been said that the Commission would not give its approval until 23 December, but the date seems to have been brought forward.
The formal approval is an important step, as the vaccine campaigns across the European Union can start almost immediately after the authorisation.
Last Thursday, however, von der Leyen tweeted that Europe would begin vaccinating on 27, 28 and 29 December.
Provided Pfizer can deliver the vaccines across the EU at the same time, the first Belgians could receive their first dose of the vaccine on Sunday, as federal health minister Frank Vandenbroucke confirmed that Belgium is ready to start administering the vaccine.
The Brussels Times