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EU to issue travellers COVID-19 e-certificate, targets free movement

The European Commission plans creating  a Digital Green Certificate that will carry all the necessary information about the COVID-19 status of a traveller, and make movement within the European Union safe (EU) during the COVID-19 pandemic.

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.

According to a communique by the Commission, this certificate 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.

The Commission will build a gateway to ensure all certificates can be verified across the EU, and support member states in the technical implementation of certificates.

Member states remain responsible to decide which public health restrictions can be waived for travellers but will have to apply for such waivers in the same way to travellers holding a Digital Green Certificate.

Vice-President for Values and Transparency, Věra Jourová said: “The Digital Green Certificate offers an EU-wide solution to ensure that EU citizens benefit from a harmonised digital tool to support free movement in the EU.

“This is a good message in support of recovery. Our key objectives are to offer an easy to use, non-discriminatory and secure tool that fully respects data protection. And we continue working towards international convergence with other partners.”

Commissioner for Justice, Didier Reynders, said: “With the Digital Green Certificate, we are taking a European approach to ensure EU citizens and their family members can travel safely and with minimum restrictions this summer. The Digital Green Certificate will not be a pre-condition to free movement and it will not discriminate in any way. A common EU-approach will not only help us to gradually restore free movement within the EU and avoid fragmentation. It is also a chance to influence global standards and lead by example based on our European values like data protection.”

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