European Commission proposes Digital Green Certificate

On 17 March 2021, the European Commission presented its proposal to create a Digital Green Certificate to facilitate the safe free movement of citizens within the EU during the COVID-19 pandemic (2021/0068 (COD). The text needs to be approved both by the European Parliament and the Council.

The Digital Green Certificate will be proof that a person has been vaccinated against COVID-19, received a negative test result or recovered from COVID-19. It will be available, free of charge, in digital or paper format. It will include a QR code to ensure the security and authenticity of the certificate.

HOTREC and its partners of the Manifesto Alliance, a network of more than 60 representatives of travel and tourism welcomed the initiative and called on a fast-track procedure for its approval. Nevertheless, more action is needed in order to coordinate travel restrictions; harmonise the EU framework for travel-related testing capacity and coordinate the reopening of the tourism activities.

At present, Member States should follow the last Council Recommendation on travel (1 February 2021), which recommends a negative PCR test for persons travelling for any essential or non-essential reason. Quarantines and contact tracing might be needed depending on the country the traveller is coming from.

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