The European Commission is leading the search for a vaccine on behalf of the EU but when one is found the 27 individual member states will decide what happens next.
How the distribution of the vaccine is coordinated will prove to be another test of EU solidarity, according to analysts.
Vaccines have been disastrous in the past. Members of the European Parliament want producers to take responsibility if there are dangerous side effects.
Lawmakers are calling on the European Commission to publish the results on clinical trials so as to reassure a sceptical public.
The European Commission says it envisages the first vaccine will be available by the end of the year with wide-scale distribution likely in April. One question legislators keep asking is, due to a lack of trust, how many people will be willing to take it?