Europe’s least-vaccinated countries are in no short supply of Covid-19 jabs – and yet Romania and Bulgaria are both looking for opportunities to sell their excess vaccines which they are not able to administer to their own population.
This is happening at a time when the rest of Europe fears both higher vaccines prices and the surge of the more-contagious Delta variant of the virus.
To avoid unused stocks of vaccines from hitting expiration date, Romania recently secured a deal with Ireland.
The Irish prime minister posted on his Twitter account a message announcing an agreement with Romania for the purchase of 700,000 additional doses of Covid-19 vaccines.
The vaccines are to be delivered to Ireland over the course of August and will be provided directly from Pfizer, in the form of a redistribution of doses originally ordered by Romania.
Ireland, looking to slow the spread of the Delta variant of coronavirus, currently has one of the highest rates of vaccination in Europe, with 73.8 percent of its adult population of 3.8 million receiving both doses.
Prior to the deal with Ireland, the south-eastern European nation also sold another 1.1 million doses of the BioNTech/Pfizer vaccine to Denmark.
In a statement issued by the Danish minister of health, Magnus Heunicke explained that Romania wanted to sell surplus doses because demand for vaccines among its population is low.
As vaccination numbers drop, Romanian authorities have donated nearly half a million vaccines to the neighbouring Moldova, as well to Serbia and Ukraine.
Last month president Klaus Iohannis also announced that Romania will make a donation of 100,000 doses of Covid-19 vaccines to Vietnam.
Bulgaria is also donating its unused vaccines mainly to neighbouring western Balkan countries.