COVID-19 vaccines could be airlifted to the UK next year if Brexit trade talks collapse and cause delays at Channel crossings.
The federal government is intending to receive countless dosages of the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine by the end of the year, with the first vaccinations due to begin today.
Nevertheless, the NHS doesn’t anticipate to immunize the majority of people up until next year.
The Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine is produced in Belgium before being transported to the UK and distributed among hospitals.
The Road Haulage Association has alerted a failure to concur an EU-UK trade offer by the end of this month, when the Brexit transition period ends, might see “substantial interruption” up to 12 months.
However Foreign Office minister James Cleverly told Sky News the federal government had strategies to “absolutely ensure” the continued supply of coronavirus vaccines, even in case of a no-deal outcome.
He informed Kay Burley: “We have actually got comprehensive plans in location to make sure the security of that vaccine supply.
” As you can imagine, that is the outright top priority product and we are committed to ensure that we will get that vaccine supply to the UK.
” We have looked at usage of non-commercial flights, we have actually got border arrangements in location.”
Mr Cleverly did not set out the information of the government’s border plans, however said that “everyone understands the significance of vaccines”.
He added: “These are individuals’s lives at stake.
” I have no doubt that the EU will assist us to facilitate their travel, we’ve got our own independent transportation strategies to ensure that vaccine supply.”
Please utilize Chrome browser for a more accessible video gamer Batches of COVID vaccine reach hospital
Asked whether he was completely confident the EU would assist the UK in providing COVID vaccines, even if trade talks ended acrimoniously, Mr Skillfully said: “I don’t have that degree of cynicism towards the EU.”
Prime Minister Boris Johnson and European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen are due to speak on Monday evening, when they will assess whether a trade offer is still salvageable after months of deadlocked settlements.
Without a trade offer being agreed by the end of this month, the EU and UK are most likely to need to trade on World Trade Organisation guidelines with tariffs imposed in both instructions.