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COVID vaccines

China vaccines penetrate East Europe amid shortage of Western jabs

Beijing builds soft power as poor nations struggle to find Pfizer and other shots

Sinopharm's COVID-19 vaccine: As the European Union struggles to supply shots to people on the continent and elsewhere, China is stepping into the breach. (Source photos by AP and Reuters)

ATHENS -- The European Union is struggling to secure COVID-19 vaccines for itself, as well as offer them to foreign countries, while China is exerting its influence by supplying jabs to emerging economies.

Although state-owned Sinopharm and other Chinese makers of COVID vaccines have not applied to the European Medicine Agency for licenses to distribute their shots, they are finding their way into European arms. Many experts, however, have expressed concern over a lack of transparency in China's clinical trials, fueling debate over the wisdom of accepting the supplies.

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