NUR-SULTAN, April 8. /TASS/. The lengthy approval process for the use of Russia’s Sputnik V vaccine in the EU is causing discontent in European countries, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov told reporters at a news conference on Thursday.
"Russian President Vladimir Putin has repeatedly cited specific data in conversations with European leaders, including European Council President Charles Michel, on when applications [for registration] had been filed and when additional documents had been sent. We proceed from the assumption that the EU has its own rules, customs and habits," he noted. "We want to cooperate, and, as you can see, the fact that the approval process for the Sputnik V vaccine by the European Medicines Agency takes so long is causing discontent in Europe."
Lavrov recalled that Slovakia, Hungary, Italy and some other countries had expressed dissatisfaction with the delay in the approval of the Russian vaccine.
To date, Sputnik V has been registered in about 60 countries with a total population of over 1.5 bln people. More than 30 countries have begun mass vaccination with Sputnik V. The vaccine’s 91.6% efficacy has been confirmed by The Lancet medical journal.
On March 4, the European Medicines Agency (EMA) announced that it had launched a rolling review of Russia's Sputnik V vaccine. According to the regulator, the approval process may be completed by the end of May.