Dutch team up with EU nations to find, produce Covid-19 vaccine

The Netherlands will join forces with France, Italy and Germany in the race to find a vaccine against the coronavirus, Minister Hugo de Jonge wrote a letter to parliament in which the decision was announced. The four nations will work together to explore potential vaccinations and to negotiate as a team with pharmaceutical companies to improve their purchasing position if a vaccine is discovered.

The members seek to involve the European Commission involved in their negotiations, and are offering other EU countries the possibility to get involved in the initiatives that come forth from the partnership so that all people, especially the economically vulnerable, can benefit from a vaccine. 

"In addition, the alliance aims to make some of the vaccines available to lower-income countries, including Africa," a statement from the Health Ministry noted.

De Jonge said that the parties involved feel that a joint strategy and collective investments are needed to get results in the quickest way possible. The initiative has been named as an “inclusive vaccine alliance”.

"These countries, just like the Netherlands, have the facilities to contribute to the development and production of a potential vaccine. By working together with them, we will be able to get an accessible, available and affordable vaccine for the whole of Europe and outside of Europe at a quicker pace," De Jonge said of the alliance.

They aim remains for the vaccine to be discovered in a European facility, De Jonge wrote in the letter. In the past, the Netherlands has raised concerns about being overly dependent on other nations like the United States.