The European Medicines Authority has said it is unlikely to approve the vaccine developed by UK company AstraZeneca in January, as the firm is yet to file an application with the regulatory body.

Speaking with Belgian newspaper Het Nieuwsblad on Tuesday, Deputy Executive Director Noel Wathion of the European Medicines Agency (EMA) said that Europeans may need to wait a while before being able to receive AstraZeneca’s Covid jab. 

“They have not even filed an application with us yet,” Wathion stated, adding that they have only received limited information about the vaccine. 

“Not even enough to warrant a conditional marketing licence… We need additional data about the quality of the vaccine. And after that, the company has to formally apply,” he said. 

Wathion claimed that this made it “improbable” for the vaccine to receive EMA approval in January. 

Approval of AstraZeneca’s jab is expected this week in Britain as the UK gears up to increase vaccine rollout.

The company has submitted a full data package about its vaccine to the British medicines regulator. 

Covid-19 vaccinations with the Pfizer jab began across the EU on Sunday, approximately three weeks after the UK commenced its inoculation program.

Like this story? Share it with a friend!