Slovakia will not buy the Russian Sputnik V vaccine as the government did not approve a resolution on its purchase on Thursday. The draft was vetoed by the For the People party.
According to the proposed resolution, the use of Sputnik V should have been permitted after a positive assessment by the State Medicines Supervision Institute (SUKL) or after registration by the European Medicines Agency (EMA). "No matter where the vaccine is made in the world, we can use it in Slovakia only after it has been registered by the European Medicines Agency (EMA)", the leader of the junior governing For the People party and Vice-premier Veronika Remisova said. She went on to say that if the vaccine is to be used without registration, there is an exemption by the health minister. In such a case, however, the minister cannot hide behind a collective decision of the government. "I'm very sorry that the coalition partner today pulled out the strongest weapon and basically said that we won't talk about Sputnik in Slovakia at all," said Prime Minister Igor Matovic (OLaNO), adding that the resolution should have allowed Health Minister Marek Krajci (OLaNO) to procure the vaccine from the Russian Federation. The premier went on to say that people in Slovakia are waiting to get inoculated, and a large number would like to be vaccinated only with Sputnik. V. Krajci and Matovic pointed out that the resolution was written in a friendly way, they sought a compromise. According to the proposal, Sputnik V could be used in Slovakia only after a positive assessment by SUKL or after registration by the European Medicines Agency. The minister noted that vaccination with Sputnik V would have been voluntary.