By Marine Strauss
BRUSSELS (Reuters) – US pharmacist Pfizer has complained of a breach of privacy after a Belgian politician published on Thursday the price per dose of COVID-19 vaccines ordered by the country, according to a Belgian newspaper.
Belgian Secretary of State Eva De Bleeker posted on Twitter a table with the number of doses and the price per dose of each vaccine, after a 30-hour debate on the Belgian budget in parliament. He later deleted his tweet.
Pfizer and its German partner BioNTech, whose COVID-19 vaccine is the first to be approved by Western regulators, are among European Union suppliers, including Belgium.
Elisabeth Schraepen, a spokeswoman for the US drug for the Benelux region, told the Belgian daily Le Soir that publishing the details was a breach of confidentiality.
“These prices are covered by a confidentiality clause in the contract with the European Commission,” Schraepen said.
The table, published briefly by De Bleeker, showed that the Belgian government paid 12 euros ($ 14.7) per dose to buy about five million photos of the Pfizer / BioNTech vaccine.
Sources familiar with the matter told Reuters that the EU had agreed to pay 15.50 euros ($ 18.34) per dose for the Pfizer / BioNTech vaccine.
The Belgian price does not take into account non-reimbursable payments of hundreds of millions of euros that the EU has made to many vaccine manufacturers to secure their fires, an EU official told Reuters.
EU governments pay the rest when ordering their doses.
“We cannot say anything about this case, everything about vaccines and prices is covered by confidentiality clauses, in the interest of society and also in the interest of the ongoing negotiations,” a European Commission spokesman said on Friday. -a daily briefing. .
The General Association of the Belgian Medicines Industry said the leak was a “serious breach of the confidentiality clause and detrimental to the government itself”.
The European Medicines Agency said a group of experts would meet on 21 December to evaluate the Pfizer / BioNTech vaccine, and EU vaccinations could begin on 27 December.
($ 1 = € 0.8161)