As the first citizens from the EU’s 27 member states get ready to receive their much-awaited Covid-19 vaccines, EU Commissioner Mariya Gabriel has defended the longer time it’s taken for the EU to authorise the Pfizer-BioNTech jab. She told FRANCE 24 “the main criteria is the health of our people”, and said that European authorities are “taking decisions based on science, they are evidence-based”.
“We are talking about a conditional market authorisation – this requires a higher level of evidence to be submitted and checked than a temporary use authorisation like in the UK for example. […]There is no exit from this situation if the vaccine is not accepted and our citizens do not have trust.”
Commissioner Gabriel also discussed EU measures to help the arts and culture sector, and measures aimed at assisting young Europeans – this as statistics show that youth unemployment has risen to an average of 17.5 percent across the bloc.