TRAVEL NEWS – March 18, 2021: The European Commission, as announced last week on Wereldreizigers.nl, made proposals for a digital green certificate (Digital Green Pass), which is intended to enable safe free movement within the European Union during the Covid-19 pandemic. The official press release can be read (in English) at the website of the European Commission.
Details of the bill
- The document would become proof that a person has been vaccinated against Covid-19, has received a negative test result or has recovered from the virus.
- Once issued, the certificate is available free of charge in digital or paper format.
- It contains a QR code to ensure the security and authenticity of the certificate.
- The commission will build a gateway to ensure that all certificates can be verified across the EU, and support Member States in the technical implementation of certificates.
- States remain responsible for deciding what public health restrictions can be imposed on travelers.
Věra Jourová, European Commission Vice-President for Values and Transparency, said: “The Digital Green Pass provides an EU-wide solution to ensure EU citizens benefit from a standard digital tool to support free movement in the EU. “
“This is good news to support recovery. Our main objectives are to provide an easy-to-use, non-discriminatory and secure tool that fully respects data protection. We will continue to work on international cooperation,” said Věra Jourová.
All EU member states + member countries
The Digital Green Pass is offered to all EU citizens and their family members, regardless of their nationality.
Commissioner for Justice in Belgium, Didier Reynders, said: “With the Digital Green Pass We are following a European approach to ensure that EU citizens and their families can travel safely and with minimal restrictions this summer.
“It is also an opportunity to influence global standards and lead by example based on our European values such as data protection.”
World Travel & Tourism Council delighted
Gloria Guevara, de World Travel & Tourism Council, welcomed the developments. She said:
“We see the Digital Green Pass as an important step towards the recovery of tourism in the region.”
“With the introduction of the new travel certificate, Member States could welcome travelers with a vaccination certificate, test negative or antibody positive, in time for the busy summer period.”
“This would provide a significant and much-needed boost to economies and save millions of jobs and livelihoods.”
She added: “We would like to congratulate the European Commission for its incredible efforts to make this happen in such a short time.
“It is now up to the Member States and the European Parliament to approve this new initiative, and we urge them to take the necessary steps to implement it urgently.
“The proposed digital green certificate, along with improved health and hygiene measures and the mandatory wearing of masks, will provide consumers with the reassurance they need to book their travels and ensure safe international travel returns.”