Today, the Court of First Instance of Brussels decided to grant interim measures in the case brought against AstraZeneca by the European Commission and the 27 EU Member States.
The court orders AstraZeneca to urgently deliver 50 million doses of vaccine by 27 September 2021 – according to a binding schedule:
15 million doses by 26 July, at 9 a.m.,
20 million doses by 23 August,
15 million doses at 27 September.
In the event of non-compliance with these delivery deadlines AstraZeneca will have to pay a penalty of €10 per dose not delivered.
The judge’s decision on the requested interim measures is based on the fact, that AstraZeneca committed a serious breach (‘faute lourde’) of its contractual obligations with the EU.
The court also holds that AstraZeneca should have deployed all its efforts to deliver the vaccines within the agreed timetable including the British production sites explicitly mentioned in the contract – especially given the big delays in deliveries to the EU.
The President of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, welcomes the decision. “This decision confirms the position of the Commission: AstraZeneca did not live up to the commitments it made in the contract. It is good to see that an independent judge confirms this”, President von der Leyen says. “This shows that our European vaccination campaign not only delivers for our citizens day by day. It also demonstrates, that it was founded on a sound legal basis.”