France accuses UK of 'blackmail' over vaccine exports

France accuses UK of 'blackmail' over vaccine exports
  • Clock-gray 10:19
  • calendar-gray 27 March 2021

France has accused the UK of "blackmail" over its handling of coronavirus vaccine exports, amid continuing tensions over supply chains, APA reports citing BBC.

Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian was asked whether the EU had been "scammed" by sending millions of doses to the UK while its own rollout stuttered.

"We need to build a co-operative relationship," he told France Info radio. "But we cannot deal this way."

France has called for the EU to implement tougher export controls.

Vaccine rollouts have started sluggishly across the bloc, and the EU has blamed pharmaceutical companies - primarily AstraZeneca - for not delivering its promised doses. AstraZeneca has denied that it is failing to honour its contract.

The EU is expecting to receive about 30 million AstraZeneca doses by the end of March, less than a third of what it was hoping for.

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