The European Union, a lifeline for Valneva? After a stock market berezina following the termination of the contract with the United Kingdom, the anti-Covid-19 vaccine from the Franco-Austrian laboratory continues to interest Brussels, which is continuing its negotiations, assured the French government. “We are determined to continue” negotiations with Valneva at EU level, a spokesperson for the Ministry of the Economy said at a weekly conference on the vaccination campaign.
Valneva, partly based in Nantes, is developing a vaccine against Covid-19, which is still in the clinical trials stage. He had nevertheless already signed a contract with the British government, to deliver 100 million doses in the event of positive results. But the group announced this week that London had terminated the contract, a big blow for the laboratory because it was its only order for this vaccine. The title has lost nearly 40% on the stock market since this announcement. He did not give details of the reasons for this termination, specifying just that London accused him of having “failed in its obligations”, which he “vigorously contests”.
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But, “on the European side, the contractual negotiations that the Commission is carrying out on this contract are continuing (…) for deliveries in 2022”, declared the French Ministry of the Economy. Negotiations between Valneva and the EU have also been complex. They had been interrupted at the beginning of the year, before resuming thereafter. Several European countries, including France, are now relying on this vaccine to “diversify” vaccine coverage, the ministry said, stressing that it is an inactivated virus vaccine project.
No vaccine using this technique is currently approved in the EU. Those that are distributed are either messenger RNA – Pfizer / BioNTech and Moderna – or viral vector – AstraZeneca and Johnson & Johnson. In addition, during the same conference, the Ministry of Health specified that health professionals “in town”, which include pharmacists and liberal doctors, could order Pfizer / BioNTech vaccines from next week, and no longer only Johnson & Johnson and Moderna vaccines.
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