The move is the latest in a row between the bloc and the pharmaceutical companies over vaccine supply delays
The European Union has threatened to impose new strict controls on the exporting of the COVID-19 vaccines made in the bloc.
The move could impact the United Kingdom’s supply of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine, which is made in Belgium.
It comes during growing European anger towards the pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca, which has been accused of failing to deliver the number of doses promised for the vaccine that it developed with Oxford University.
This comes after people who have already been vaccinated for COVID-19 could still transmit the coronavirus on to other people and should continue following the lockdown restrictions, England’s deputy chief medical officer has stressed.
A government spokeswoman said: “We remain in close contact with all of our vaccine suppliers. Our vaccine supply and scheduled deliveries will fully support offering the first dose to all four priority groups by 15 February.”
Vaccines minister Nadhim Zahawi echoed this, telling Sky News he was “confident” supplies of the Pfizer vaccine would continue.
“Pfizer have made sure that they have always delivered for us, they will continue to do so,” he said.
“They have made a very important announcement on the equitable supply of the whole world, including the European Union, and I’m sure they will deliver for the European Union, the United Kingdom and for the rest of the world.”
“We have got 367 million vaccines that we have ordered from seven different suppliers, so I’m confident we will meet our target and continue to vaccinate the whole of the adult population by the autumn.”
Earlier on Monday, Ms Kyriakides had criticised the decision by pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca to slow supplies of its coronavirus vaccine as “unacceptable”.
On Friday, the pharmaceutical company, announced that it could not meet agreed supply targets which, according to reports, meant that a cut of 60% to 31 million doses – just weeks after Pfizer also announced supply delays.
AstraZeneca is believed to have received an upfront payment of £298m when the 27-nation bloc sealed a supply deal with the company in August for at least 300 million doses.
Under advance purchase deals sealed during the pandemic, the EU makes down-payments to companies to secure doses, with the money expected to be mostly used to expand production capacity.
This comes after data on when the nation’s COVID-19 lockdown measures can start to be eased in England will be assessed before mid-February, according to the Prime Minister. Boris Johnson has said that the government will be “looking at the potential of relaxing some measures” before the middle of the next month.
The vaccine is expected to be approved for use in the EU on 29 January, with first deliveries expected from 15 February.
An AstraZeneca spokesman said the company was doing everything it could to bring its coronavirus vaccine to millions of Europeans as soon as possible.
Meanwhile, it has been revealed the company, which has its headquarters in the UK, faces wider supply problems, with Australia and Thailand affected.
The UK is particularly reliant on the Oxford-AstraZeneca jab and it has been key to the country’s vaccine rollout so far, but Health Secretary Matt Hancock has warned that supply across the board is “tight”.