The European Union (EU) is working intensively to enable the delivery of vaccines against COVID-19 in the Western Balkans, sources at the headquarters of the EU institutions in Brussels told Radio Free Europe.
According to these sources, it is about 651 thousand doses of Pfizer / BionTech vaccines, which will be distributed in the Western Balkans. The purpose of delivering these vaccines is to immunize health professionals and other priority groups. These vaccines will come directly from the EU, and are independent of the World Health Organization's COVAX program, which aims to distribute vaccines to poor countries. The EU is working to reach a so-called tripartite agreement, which will include the Western Balkan countries, Pfizer and the EU itself. According to these sources, Austria will be the country that will assist in the administrative side of vaccine distribution. In December 2020, the European Commission allocated 70m euros for supplies to the Western Balkan countries.
EU Enlargement Commissioner Oliver Varhelyi on Friday held a video chat with the Western Balkan foreign ministers. He said that in this conversation were also discussed the latest actions to ensure the distribution of vaccines against COVID-19.