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Greek PM: Return to Normalcy Hinges on Covid-19 Vaccination

Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis. Photo source: @primeministerGR

Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis expects the country to return to normalcy in the spring or early summer provided the national vaccination strategy moves ahead as planned.

Speaking during the online World Economic Forum: The Davos Agenda 2021 event, the prime minister cited Greece’s positive track record in addressing the coronavirus pandemic and underlined the importance of having trust in the guidance of health experts.

Mitsotakis went on to add that effective and clear communication with citizens is of utmost importance, adding that for the most part Greeks conformed to the restrictions.

The Greek prime minister underlined the importance of vaccination availability which is currently at the center of an EU fall-out over delays in vaccine distribution by pharma firm AstraZeneca. He said Greece together with the EU would put pressure on pharmaceuticals so they meet the terms of the contracts and deliver vaccines faster.

Photo source: @primeministerGR

Looking ahead, Mitsotakis said he expects vaccination progress to be achieved in the second quarter of the year. Greece has thus far vaccinated close to 2 percent of the population, he said.

“If we assume that in Q2 we will have a big breakthrough in terms of the number of available vaccines, I do expect the real mass vaccination to start at some point in March, April, May,” he said. 

“If we also assume that there is a degree of seasonality, which we saw last year, one can envision a return to normal by late spring, early summer. Certainly very important for us given that we want people to travel and come to Greece, but we want people to come to Greece safely.”

The Greek PM expressed his concern about vaccination availability underlining however that Greece has made sure to stock up on the second dose. 

“We don’t want to take the risk to run out of doses and not administer the second dose on time, according to the protocols that these vaccines have been approved for,” Mitsotakis said.

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