EU Minister for Foreign Affairs Josep Borrell has expressed hope that the European bloc will be able to certify Russia's breakthrough anti-COVID inoculation Sputnik V.
“I took the floor only to congratulate Russia on the success of this venture, it is useful for the whole of humanity, because it indicates that we will have more tools for fighting the pandemic”, Borrell said after holding talks with the head of Russia’s Foreign Ministry Sergei Lavrov.
He said he would be happy to read the reports on the third phase of Sputnik V's clinical trials in the landmark journal The Lancet.
“I hope that now the European Medicines Agency will be able to certify this vaccine for use across EU member states. It'll be good news for us, because, as you know, we lack jabs and always welcome an additional supplier”, Borrell pointed out.
On Tuesday, the peer-reviewed journal published an interim analysis from the phase 3 trials of the Russian jab, the world's first registered shot against COVID-19, showing its 91.6 percent efficacy against the highly contagious infection.
The vaccine is also 91.8 percent effective for people aged over 60, and no rare severe adverse effects had been deemed as associated with the shot, as most of the side effects were identified as merely mild flu-like conditions.
"I think it is a good, well-conducted trial. The data is sound. You cannot see any obvious problem with it, 91.6 percent efficacy puts Sputnik V up in the top-flight vaccines that have [been] reported so far", commented David Livermore, a member of the scientific advisory board on Sputnik V.
Addressing the chances of the vaccine being approved in the European Union in early March, the professor said the entire world, including Europe, which is experiencing disruptions in the import of COVID-19 vaccines, needs every available inoculation to be at their fingertips.
The US chief specialist in infectious diseases, Anthony Fauci, likewise referred to the results of the trials of the Sputnik V coronavirus vaccine as encouraging. "We live in a global community, and it is encouraging to see that other countries are coming out with results from their own vaccine trial, such as the Russian trial that we heard about a day or two ago", Fauci told a press briefing on Wednesday.