European Commission approves Pfizer's Covid-19 vaccine

European Commission approves Pfizer's Covid-19 vaccine
Credit: Ursula von der Leyen/Twitter screengrab

As expected, but earlier than expected, the European Union approved Pfizer-BioNTech's corona vaccine. This was announced by President Ursula von der Leyen.

As expected, the European Commission approved Pfizer-BioNTech's vaccine against the coronavirus, Commission president Ursula von der Leyen announced on Monday evening.

"Today, we add an important chapter to a European success story, by making available the first Covid-19 vaccine for Europeans," she said.

"As we have promised, the vaccine will be made available for all EU countries at the same time, on the same conditions," von der Leyen said.

The Commission's approval follows a positive opinion from the European Medicines Agency earlier on Monday. Normally, the European Commission was not set to approve Pizer's vaccine until 23 December, but has moved the decision forward to today.

The first vaccine batches will be shipped from Pfizer's manufacturing site in Belgium "within the next days," she said, adding that vaccination campaigns across the EU can start "on the same days" on 27, 28 and 29 December.

"This is a very good way to end this difficult year, and to finally start turning the page on Covid-19," von der Leyen said. "This is our first vaccine. More will be approved soon, if they prove to be safe and effective."

The European Medicines Agency (EMA) will issue its opinion on Moderna's vaccine on 6 January, according to her.

Maïthé Chini

The Brussels Times

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