By Mauro Orru

 

The European Union is launching a second lawsuit against AstraZeneca PLC to scrutinize whether the company breached the advance purchase agreement with the bloc over vaccine supplies.

A spokesman for the European Commission, the EU's executive arm, said Tuesday that while the latest suit is still aimed at ensuring the supply of doses from AstraZeneca, its objective is to probe whether there has been a violation of the advance purchase agreement.

"We believe that AstraZeneca has indeed not respected the terms and conditions of the advance purchase agreement and in the context of this process we ask the court to follow us in our reasoning," the spokesman said.

The announcement comes just weeks after the EU filed the first suit against the company. The EU and AstraZeneca have been at loggerheads since the company said earlier this year that it would only be able to deliver a fraction of the up to 400 million doses it was contracted to deliver to the bloc by the middle of the year.

The spokesman said the bloc is requesting that an order for the delivery of doses, including through the imposition of penalties.

AstraZeneca didn't respond to a request for comment.

 

Write to Mauro Orru at mauro.orru@wsj.com; @MauroOrru94

 

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

May 11, 2021 09:44 ET (13:44 GMT)

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