'Idiotic vandalism' – EU savaged over vaccine block as MP issues warning ahead of summit

Amid the possibility of the EU shutting down vaccine supply chains out of the continent, Tory MP for Dudley North Marco Longhi, stated it would be “absurd” for Brussels to block exports. Speaking to Express.co.uk, Mr Longhi said: “The Pfizer vaccine for example is made up of different component from several different areas. “It will be an act of idiotic vandalism to actually start saying, ‘well, we’ll start locking these supply chains up’.

“Who does it help? It helps absolutely nobody.”

Last week, Ursula von der Leyen claimed the EU was considering blocking exports as member states were not receiving their fair share of doses.

With vaccine programmes struggling across the bloc, Ms von der Leyen claimed it is well within the EU’s rights to restrict vaccine exports to make sure deliveries are sent to member states.

EU states will meet on Thursday to discuss whether the bloc will impose measures to restrict vaccine supplies.

Ahead of that meeting, however, some member states have begun to warn Ms von der Leyen against imposing a ban on vaccine exports out of the EU.

Mr Longhi added: “What you’re seeing playing out in the EU commissioner is that they have been embarrassed, who are being shown up for their incompetence, unfortunately.

“And they’re under enormous political pressure from their own member states and UK politicians are asking, ‘what are you playing at?'”

Mr Longhi also revealed his concern over the decision to block vaccines and how it would impact the UK’s exit from lockdown.

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“I’m very much against it. It would be a very retrograde step.

“It’s absolutely vital we keep supply chains open.”

Ahead of the summit on Thursday, Ms Merkel held a call with Boris Johnson to discuss issues and vaccine exports.

Following the call this week, Ms Merkel said: “When it comes to vaccine production, there are a huge range of international interdependencies.

“You have to be very careful now about imposing general export bans – you have to take a very close look at the supply chains.

“We will make our decision in a responsible manner, and at the same time we will keep talking to the British government.”

The threat to block vaccine supplies was in part sparked by the low rate of inoculations in the EU.

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