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Australia will immediately send one million vaccine doses to Papua New Guinea once AstraZeneca provides 3.8 million doses after Prime Minister Scott Morrison sought assurances from the European Union that it would not restrict the export of the vaccines.
Morrison said he has still “not received any response” to a request to the European Commission for one million doses, originally meant for Australia, to be expedited for humanitarian aid to PNG.
The European Union has overnight indicated it will not be “seeking to restrict these vaccines,” according to the prime minister.
“I'll be very pleased ... to write again in parallel both to AstraZeneca, to seek the export licences for the full amount of the doses, the 3.8 million, to be provided to Australia,” he said.
“I can assure you that the first million of those will be used to support the humanitarian effort that we're putting in place for Papua New Guinea”.
The prime minister said if it is “indeed the position of the European Union” to grant export licenses for the 3.8 million doses to come to Australia, then “we would encourage them to do that”.
“To provide support to our pacific family in Papua New Guinea that are undergoing a humanitarian crisis and to support them,” said PM Morrison.
SOURCE: SKY NEWS/PACNEWS
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