European Digital Green Certificate: provisional agreement reached

On 20 May 2021, the European Council and  Parliament reached a provisional agreement on the European Digital Green Certificate, which will be called the ‘EU digital Covid Certificate’.

The main outcome of the negotiations confirmed that the certificate will be available in either digital or paper format and it will attest that a person has been vaccinated against the coronavirus, has a recent negative test result or has recovered from the infection.

With regard to testing costs, the European Commission announced the mobilisation of €100 million from the European Emergency Instrument (ESI) to help Member States fund the tests.

Member States also agreed that no additional travel restrictions in response to the Covid-19 pandemic – such as quarantine, self-isolation or testing – should be imposed “unless they are necessary and proportionate to safeguard public health”. It is to note that this part of the text is not legally binding.

It was also agreed that Member States must accept vaccination certificates issued in the other Member States for persons inoculated with a vaccine authorised for use in the EU by the European Medicines Agency (EMA). It will be up to the Member States to decide if they will also accept vaccination certificates authorised by the other Member States following national authorisation procedures or for vaccines listed by the World Health Organisation (WHO) for emergency use.

The EU Council and Parliament will now adopt the text in the upcoming days. The certificate is expected to be applicable from 1 July 2021 onwards.

HOTREC very much welcomes the swift adoption of the agreement. But we call on the EU to extend the financing of tests to tourism travellers and hope that the Council will adopt as soon as possible a Recommendation on lifting travel restrictions within the EU. Only in this way, the summer season can restart strongly!

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