The unified EU vaccination card should allow travel in Europe from summer despite the Corona pandemic. An overview of the most important questions podcasts.
The European Union Parliament has to clear the way for final negotiations with member states on Wednesday.
This issue is of great concern to member states that rely heavily on tourism. An overview of the current situation:
What is the position of the European Union countries?
On the basis of a bilateral agreement, Greece and Cyprus allow Israeli citizens who have already been vaccinated to enter the country without restrictions. Both countries want to expand this list to other countries soon. Nordic countries are planning to obtain a health passport that will also benefit holders nationally. In Germany, the Ministry of Health has commissioned IBM and three other companies to develop the vaccination permit application.
What is the scheme at the level of the European Union?
On behalf of the 27 EU countries, the EU Commission should ensure that there is no mixture of different documents. In mid-March, I proposed the legal introduction of the so-called green certification: the national authorities should then issue this document in accordance with the European Union’s unified rules, which, however, have yet to be negotiated in detail by the EU Parliament and member states.
What information should the certificate contain?
It should provide information about whether a person can spread the Corona virus, or at least how likely it is to spread, in addition to information about possible vaccination against Corona, the document must also contain the results of current tests and information about Corona disease.
The certificate is primarily intended to be a digital document to be viewed on mobile devices. But it has to be printable, too. It is important that the barcode is scanned for validation. The document must be issued in the respective national language and in the English language. According to the Ministry of Health, the application of a German vaccination permit is based on these requirements.
What should be used?
Every EU country has to decide for itself. According to the committee, the certificate should make travel easier, but it will in no way be “a prerequisite for the exercise of freedom of movement.” Member state authorities, for example, can waive existing testing or quarantine obligations upon entry based on the information contained in the certification.
Which vaccines are important?
According to the plans, vaccinations with vaccines approved by the European Medicines Agency (EMA) could be included in the certification. This is currently money from Biontech / Pfizer, Moderna, Astrazeneca, and Johnson & Johnson.
What about other vaccines?
Hungary, for example, has also vaccinated the Russian Sputnik V vaccine and the Chinese company Sinopharm vaccine. According to the commission, other member states should be free to recognize vaccination certificates with these factors or not. The criticism comes from the European Union Parliament. Some MPs want to recognize only vaccines that have been approved everywhere.
When does the testimony come?
The Commission, Parliament and the Federal Government set the end of June as soon as possible. After the green light from Parliament, negotiations with member states could begin after Wednesday. According to the commission, the technical implementation should take place in parallel.
Where might the difficulties arise?
In addition to the restrictions on vaccines approved by the EMA, some members of Parliament are calling for a higher price cap for Corona tests and a commitment by member states to waive restrictions on entry for vaccinated people. Some parliamentarians have raised concerns about data protection. This could delay the negotiations.
Additionally, the pledge to bring 27 national solutions under one roof using a common standard is technically complex. Problems and delays cannot be ruled out.