The authorities of the EU countries are increasingly criticized for the insufficiently fast pace of vaccination. So, the head of BioNTech, Ugur Shahin, said that in terms of orders for vaccines, the European Union is clearly hesitating. Today, in terms of the number of vaccinated per hundred inhabitants, the EU countries lag behind Israel, the USA, and the UK. Both indignant and understanding voices are heard on the pages of the press.
Who else, but Italy should have acted faster!
In the pages of Corriere Della Sera, the Milan-based writer Antonio Scurati criticizes the ineffective actions of the country’s leadership, and in particular of his home region of Lombardy:
“I demand answers. Sixty million Italians, and above all, ten million Lombardians, are demanding them with me. How could it be that Italy — the first Western country to face a pandemic — has received only half a million doses of the vaccine to date? … And why is there still no national vaccine distribution plan? Mr. President Fontana, how can you explain the fact that the Lombardy region, which you lead, torn apart by a pandemic and has already failed the influenza vaccination campaign, now, apparently, will also fail the covid vaccination?”
Delay is negligence
And in Belgium, the authorities are criticized in the sense that vaccination is progressing too slowly. The authorities, in turn, say that the race is inappropriate here. De Standaard disagrees with the authorities’ position:
“Of course, this is a real race, the goal of which is to vaccinate as many people as possible as soon as possible, otherwise we would have to talk about negligence. In this case, the delay means more deaths, more patients in hospitals, and this could have been avoided. Fears that the complexity of the structure of our country will backfire on us in the course of this crisis and prevent us from actively acting are well-founded. The last nine months have been confirmed. In terms of infection statistics, the situation now looks good. That is why we must not forget that the matter is urgent: such an advantageous starting position must not be missed.”
Europe is not to blame
In Germany, voices are growing louder in criticism of the EU’s general strategy for vaccination against covid. Taz stands up for the EU:
“Firstly, in the fall, when the purchases were carried out, no one was given to know which of the vaccines would receive approval first. … Secondly, the decision to order most of the vaccine centrally on behalf of the European Commission turned out to be absolutely correct. … It’s even scary to imagine what nationalistic cries would have rushed from Warsaw if more prosperous Germany had taken all the vaccine from under Poland’s nose. … Europe has already suffered enough from narrow-minded nationalists! We don’t need coronavirus chauvinism.”