A press release by the European Commission says that today, the EU has reached a crucial milestone with 70% of the adult population now fully vaccinated.
It adds that in total, over 256 million adults in the EU have now received a full vaccine course. Seven weeks ago already, the Commission`s delivery target was met, ahead of time: to provide Member States, by the end of July, with enough vaccine doses to fully vaccinate 70% of the adult EU population.
The President of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, said that “the full vaccination of 70% of adults in the EU already in August is a great achievement. The EU`s strategy of moving forward together is paying off and putting Europe at the vanguard of the global fight against COVID-19.”
“But the pandemic is not over. We need more. I call on everyone who can to get vaccinated. And we need to help the rest of the world vaccinate, too. Europe will continue to support its partners in this effort, in particular the low and middle income countries.” she added.
Stella Kyriakides, Commissioner for Health and Food Safety, said that “our efforts to further increase vaccinations across the EU will continue unabated. We will continue to support in particular those Member States that are continuing to face challenges. We need to close the immunity gap and the door for new variants and to do so, vaccinations must win the race over variants.”
The press release says that given the threat of new variants, it is important to continue ensuring the availability of sufficient vaccines, including adapted vaccines, also in the coming years. That is why the Commission signed a new contract with BioNTech-Pfizer on 20 May, which foresees the delivery of 1.8 billion doses of vaccines between the end of the year and 2023.
For the same purpose, the Commission has also exercised the option of 150 million doses of the second Moderna contract. Member States have the possibility to resell or donate doses to countries in need outside the EU or through the COVAX Facility, contributing to a global and fair access to vaccines across the world. Other contracts may follow. This is the EU`s common insurance policy against any future waves of COVID-19.