Rome: The Italian division of US-based pharmaceutical giant Pfizer said it will continue to honour its contract to provide coronavirus vaccines to the country even if it follows through on a plan to sue the company for falling behind on vaccine deliveries.
Paivi Kerkola, CEO of Pfizer Italia Srl., told the Italian newspaper La Repubblica on Thursday that her company will “continue to supply the vaccine as envisaged by the agreements with the European Commission”, Xinhua news agency reported.
A Pfizer Italia official confirmed Kerkola’s remarks when contacted by Xinhua.
The European Commission has concluded supply agreements with Pfizer and other coronavirus vaccine makers, and the vaccines would then be allocated among the European Union (EU) member states.
While Pfizer and its partner, Germany’s BioNTech, have acknowledged that there was a slowdown in vaccine deliveries over the past two weeks, Kerkola said supply would return to “normal levels” this week.
On Monday, Italy filed a complaint with the EU against Pfizer, BioNTech and AstraZeneca, another drug maker, for failing to deliver coronavirus vaccines quickly enough.
The following day, Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte threatened to sue the companies as well, but so far no formal lawsuit has been filed.
The Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine is the first approved and most widely used jab in Italy.
Pharmaceutical giant Moderna’s vaccine has also been authorised for use in Italy, while AstraZeneca’s alternative product is awaiting approval.