PRAGUE, April 10. /TASS/. A formal review of Russia’s Sputnik V vaccine for Slovakia will be carried out by a Hungarian lab, part of Europe’s OMCL (Official Medicines Control Laboratory) network.
The decision was made during Friday’s visit to Budapest by Slovakian deputy premier and Finance Minister Igor Matovic, who recently had to resign from the post of the country’s premier. His resignation came as a result of a governmental crisis triggered by Sputnik V purchases, made before the jab’s use is officially authorized in the European Union.
"After four-hour talks with Hungarian Foreign Minister Peter Szijjarto and Prime Minister Viktor Orban, I can confirm that we have agreed on a wonderful thing: the expert evaluation of the Sputnik V vaccine, intended for Slovakia, will be carried out in a certified lab of the OMCL network in Hungary," Matovic said in a Facebook post.
The deputy premier believes that Slovakian pharmaceutical watchdog’s decision to study the Russian vaccine at an uncertified lab was a big mistake. This miscalculation led to delays in the Sputnik V use in his country and put the contract with Russia under threat, he said.
"Now we need to persuade Russians that they can still believe to Slovakia," Matovic said.
On Thursday, Magdalena Yurkemikova, spokeswoman of the State Institute for Drug Control, which acts as a pharmaceutical regulator in the republic, claimed that the Russian Sputnik V coronavirus vaccine, the first batch of which arrived in Slovakia on March 1, did not have the same characteristics that described in The Lancet medical journal.
In turn, the Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF) asked the Slovak government to return the batch of Sputnik V vaccine due to numerous contract violations so that it can be used in other countries.