International: European Union

European Commission

The covid pandemic has resulted in a great focus on local and national solutions regarding the securement of medical supplies. However international cooperation has shown also to be important. An international system can be a powerful way to secure effectiveness and a robust supply chain, as more nations go to the market together instead of betting against each other and create a competitive market with the cost of human life as a consequence.

One case of international cooperation we found is from the European Union. In March 2020 the European Commissions launched a joint procurement of personal protective equipment with engagement from 25 member states. The procurement where to secure masks type 2 and 3, gloves, googles, face-shields, surgical masks and overalls. The commissions role was to coordinate the procurement and securing offers from production companies within a scale needed by the member states[1].

Besides coordinating the joint procurement, the European Commission have secured an extra stock of PPE in EU, available for Member States in case of difficulties with production capacity or anticipated needs. The Commission have also ensured a conformity assessment and market surveillance of medical supplies to increase safety standards. Lastly it has triggered a discussion with the European industry on how to convert production lines to supply the necessary PPE for the members states, and thereby secure a regional manufacturing capacity able to support the increasing need during the pandemic[2].



[1] European Commision 2020, Coronavirus: Commission bid to ensure supply of personal protective equipment for the EU proves successful. Coronavirus: Commission bid for PPE successful (

[2] European Commision 2020, Overview of the Commissions’s response, Public Health. Overview of the Commission’s response | European Commission (