02 July 2021


On 30 June, the EU extended until 30 September 2021 the COVID-19 vaccines export transparency and authorisation mechanism in its current form. The purpose of the mechanism is to secure deliveries of vaccines to Europeans in line with companies’ contractual obligations.

The current EU export authorisation mechanism for vaccines was adapted by the Commission in March by introducing the principles of reciprocity and proportionality as new criteria to be considered for authorising exports. Two new elements were added. First, in addition to the impact of a planned export to the fulfilment of the EU’s Advance Purchase Agreements (APAs) with vaccine manufacturers, Member States and the  Commission should also consider whether the destination country restricts its own exports of vaccines or their raw materials, either by law or other means; and the conditions prevailing in the destination country better or worse than the EU’s, in particular its epidemiological situation, its vaccination rate and its access to vaccines. In addition, the new legislative act includes countries previously exempted in the scope of the regulation. Vulnerable, low- and middle-income countries will continue to be exempted from the scope of the mechanism.