Declassification of the content of the agreement signed with the pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca
Question for written answer E-006514/2020
to the Commission
Simona Baldassarre (ID), Francesca Donato (ID), Lucia Vuolo (ID), Silvia Sardone (ID), Isabella Tovaglieri (ID), Massimo Casanova (ID), Annalisa Tardino (ID), Paolo Borchia (ID), Vincenzo Sofo (ID), Alessandra Basso (ID), Rosanna Conte (ID), Matteo Adinolfi (ID)
On 27 August 2020, the Commission concluded an agreement with AstraZeneca for the supply of 300 million doses to Member States, plus an option for a further 100 million doses.
The content of the agreement is currently classified, owing to the commercially sensitive information within it. However, this protection of AstraZeneca’s legitimate interests should also be balanced by the need for transparency in relation to citizens and their representatives. It is unusual for even MEPs not to have access to the vital information set out in the trade agreement signed by the Commission, especially considering that on 22 September 2020 the ENVI and ITRE committees had invited the pharmaceutical companies involved in the search for a vaccine to attend a hearing, but AstraZeneca had declined the invitation.
In the light of the above, can the Commission answer the following questions:
- 1.Does it not consider it appropriate to share the content of the agreement with Parliament, while taking due precautions?
- 2.In its view, could such a situation not set a significant precedent when it comes to balancing the interests of the commercial protection of a company with the need for transparency and citizens’ right to health?
-  This question is supported by Members other than the authors: Mara Bizzotto (ID), Gianantonio Da Re (ID)