German regulator sees first COVID-19 vaccines approved in Europe in early 2021

FILE PHOTO: Small bottles labeled with a "Vaccine COVID-19" sticker and a medical syringe are seen in this illustration taken taken April 10, 2020. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic

BERLIN (Reuters) - The head of Germany’s vaccine regulator expects the first COVID-19 vaccines to be approved in Europe in early 2021, but cautioned it would take time before vaccinations could start.

“It is our clear expectation that, according to the latest surveys by the European Medicines Agency, the vaccines will receive marketing authorisation in Europe early next year,” Klaus Cichutek, head of the Paul Ehrlich Institute, told a virtual press briefing on Friday.

Reporting by Caroline Copley; editing by Thomas Seythal