The EU’s vaccine fiasco was ‘humiliating’ but its biggest challenge is yet to come

When the European Commission sought to block AstraZeneca from exporting the Covid-19 vaccine, it most likely wasn’t expecting the move to backfire so spectacularly, says The Telegraph’s Brussels correspondent James Crisp.

The President of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, swiftly backtracked on the suspicion that AstraZeneca wasn’t being transparent about its production capacity. The entire incident, which Mrs von der Leyen hoped would humiliate AstraZeneca, ended up painting the European Commission in a bad light.

Many political commentators quickly branded the episode as an argument for Brexit in itself. But once the EU’s vaccination roll out gets under way, the episode is likely to be forgotten among member states, says James Crisp.

Instead, the EU’s make or break moment will be in its handling of the post-Covid economic recovery, he adds.

Watch the video above to see James Crisps’ full analysis of the impact of coronavirus on the EU.

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