Bosnian state government endorsed on Thursday the amendments to 'Commitment agreement – committed purchase arrangement' with the Global Vaccine Alliance (GAVI), unblocking the arrangement with the COVAX system for the vaccine delivery.
The Council of Ministers convened on Thursday and adopted the proposed amendments, specifying the compensation details to the agreement, and authorising Civil Affairs Minister Ankica Gudeljevic to sign the deals with AstraZeneca and Pfizer/BioNTech.
“While expecting to get the first doses of previously arranged and paid vaccines through COVAX system, BiH was set a new condition in mid-February and asked to sign amendments to the agreement,” the Council of Ministers recalled following the Thursday session.
Bosnia and Herzegovina allocated two million marks (approx 1mn Euro) to cover the costs of the vaccine procurement through COVAX, which among other things included the delivery, import and distribution of vaccines against Covid-19 as well as the costs of transportation, storage and quality insurance.
The amended agreement has been sent in an urgent procedure to the Presidency of BiH for confirmation.
“This is, I hope, the last condition, although we met all necessary conditions beforehand,” said Council of Ministers Chairman Zoran Tegeltija, recalling that Bosnia secured 1,230,000 vaccines through COVAX but has not received a single dose yet.
According to him, it was earlier confirmed that BiH would first get the delivery of Pfizer/BioNTech and then AstraZeneca vaccines.
“I want to believe that this system will meet the deadline and that's the end of March 2021. I am sure we can start a regular vaccination process through the procurements we have with Russian and Chinese producers and through this system, and that the quantities of the delivered vaccines will increase day by day,” stressed Tegeltija.
Commenting on the allegations about a possible lawsuit by AstraZeneca over the statement of Foreign Minister Bisera Turkovic, who said AstraZeneca vaccine produced in India is “mainly used in poor countries,” Tegeltija said this was an arrogant attitude of the company.
“I don't agree with Minister Turkovic's statement, I don't agree with how she spoke about other countries and producers we depend on, but I agree the least with the stances of AstraZeneca about suing a country they have to deliver more than 165,000 vaccines because of one statement in media,” he concluded.