Transparency and accountability are important to help build the trust of European citizens and to make sure that they can rely on the effectiveness and safety of the vaccines purchased at the EU level.

The European Commission has published its contract with drugmaker AstraZeneca. 

The contract is at the heart of a dispute over access to vaccines, after AstraZeneca announced last week it would fall short (up to 60%) of delivering promised vaccines to the EU by March because of production problems in Belgium. 

The Anglo-Swedish firm's unexpectedly announcement triggered a furious response from the bloc. AstraZeneca and the EU had signed a deal for up to 400 million doses of the vaccine. The EU, whose member states are far behind Israel, Britain and the United States in rolling out vaccines, is scrambling to get supplies.

In a bid to break the deadlock, AstraZeneca offered 8 million more doses of its shot to the EU, but the bloc said that was too far short of what was originally promised.