German vaccine purchase agreements don’t affect EU contracts - ministry

Oezlem Saki, member of a German Red Cross mobile vaccination team prepares the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine for employees and inhabitants of a retirement nursery in Dillenburg, Germany, January 7, 2021. REUTERS/Kai Pfaffenbach

BERLIN (Reuters) - Germany’s agreement with BioNTech to purchase additional doses of a COVID-19 vaccine does not affect contracts between the company and the European Union, a health ministry spokesman said on Friday.

The president of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, said earlier on Friday that member states are not allowed to negotiate separate vaccine deals with pharmaceutical companies in parallel to the efforts of the EU as a whole.

Reporting by Thomas Seythal and Andreas Rinke; Editing by Maria Sheahan