The makers of the Russian coronavirus vaccine have accused a top EU executive of being “biased" after he said the European Union had no need for the Sputnik V. Speaking on TF1 Sunday evening, EU Internal Market Commissioner Thierry Breton said: “We have absolutely no need for Sputnik V."
He also said that “the Russians are having a hard time making it and we will probably have to help them. “If we need to provide them with one or two factories to manufacture it why not, but for the moment Europeans are a priority," he added.
The Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF), which has backed the development of Sputnik, accused Breton of being “clearly biased" against the jab because it was Russian.
“Dear Commissioner Breton, please stop being biased. Europeans want a choice of safe and efficient vaccines, which you so far failed to provide," RDIF said on Twitter. It added that Sputnik V has been approved for use in 54 countries.
This month the Amsterdam-based EMA regulator launched a rolling review of the Sputnik V vaccine, a key step towards it being approved as the first non-Western coronavirus jab to be used across the 27-nation bloc. RDIF said that if Breton’s remarks were “an official position of the EU, please inform us that there is no reason to pursue EMA approval because of your political biases. “We will continue to save lives in other countries."
Russia registered Sputnik V last August ahead of large-scale clinical trials, sparking concern among some experts over the fast-track process. Leading medical journal The Lancet has published results showing the jab to be safe and over 90 percent effective.