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Saturday, October 16, 2021

Commission: This is how the green certificate will be

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The European Commission has unveiled its proposal for the Green Certificate, which will cover vaccinated people, those who already have coronavirus and those who have a recent negative test.

The Commission proposal was accompanied by a video which briefly explained all the features of the certificate.

The full communication from the European Commission:

The European Commission is today proposing the creation of a digital green certificate that will facilitate safe free movement within the EU during the COVID-19 pandemic. The digital green certificate will prove that a person has been vaccinated against COVID-19, tested negative or recovered from COVID-19. It will be available free of charge in digital or printed form. It will include a QR code to guarantee its security and authenticity. The Commission will set up a portal to ensure the authenticity of all certificates across the EU, and will assist Member States in the technical implementation of certificates. It is up to the Member States to decide which public health restrictions to exempt travelers, but they should apply these exceptions in the same way to travelers holding a digital green certificate.

The Vice President for Values ​​and Transparency, Viera Jurova, said: "The digital green certificate offers a solution for the whole EU, ensuring that all EU citizens benefit from a harmonized digital tool that will support free movement in the EU. a positive message for recovery. Our main goal is to offer an easy-to-use and secure tool that will not discriminate and will fully respect data protection. "And we are still working to achieve international convergence with other partners."

The Commissioner for Justice, Didier Renders, said: "With the Digital Green Certificate, we are taking a European approach to ensuring that EU citizens and their families can travel safely and with the least possible restrictions. this summer. The green digital certificate will not be a prerequisite for free movement and 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 an opportunity to influence global standards and set an example based on our European values. , such as data protection ".

Key elements of the regulation proposed by the Commission today:
Accessible and secure certificates for all EU citizens:
  • The digital green certificate will cover three types of certificates - vaccination certificates, examination certificates (NAAT / RT-PCR test or rapid antigen test) and certificates for people who have recovered from COVID-19.
  • The certificates will be issued in digital or printed form. Both versions will include a QR code with the necessary information, as well as a digital signature that will ensure the authenticity of the certificate.
  • The Commission will set up a portal and provide support to Member States in developing software that can be used by authorities to verify all certificate signatures across the EU. No personal data of certificate holders will go through nor will it be maintained by the verifying Member State.
  • Certificates will be available free of charge and will be issued in the official language or languages ​​of the issuing Member State and in English.
Non-discrimination:
  • All citizens - vaccinated and unvaccinated - should be able to benefit from the Digital Green Certificate when traveling in the EU. but also the creation of an examination certificate for COVID-19, as well as a certificate for people who have recovered from COVID-19.
  • Same right for travelers with a digital green certificate - if Member States accept proof of vaccination as a reason for exemption from certain restrictions for public health reasons, such as screening or quarantine, they will be required to accept the certificates on the same terms issued under the digital green certificate system. This obligation will be limited to vaccines that have been authorized in the EU, but Member States may decide to accept other vaccines in addition to these.
  • Notification of other measures - if a Member State still requires digital green certificate holders to be quarantined or examined, it should inform the Commission and all other Member States and explain the reasons for imposing such measures.
Only essential information and secure personal data:

These certificates will contain a limited set of information, such as name, date of birth, date of issue, vaccine / test / recovery information, and the unique certificate ID. The verification of these data will be possible only for the confirmation and verification of the authenticity and validity of the certificates.

The digital green certificate will be valid in all EU Member States and will be open to Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland. The digital green certificate should be issued to EU citizens and their family members, regardless of their nationality. It should also be issued to third-country nationals residing in the EU and to visitors entitled to travel to other Member States.

The digital green certificate system is a temporary measure. It will be suspended as soon as the World Health Organization (WHO) announces the end of the international public health emergency caused by COVID-19.

Next steps

To be ready before the summer, this proposal needs rapid approval by the European Parliament and the Council.

At the same time, Member States must implement the trust framework and technical standards agreed within the eHealth network to ensure the timely implementation of the green digital certificate, its interoperability and its full compliance with personal data protection. . The aim is to complete the technical work and the proposal within the coming months.

record

In order to comply with measures to limit the spread of coronavirus, travelers to the EU are required to submit various documents, such as medical certificates, test results or statements. The lack of standard formats has resulted in travelers having problems traveling within the EU. In addition, there have been reports of forged or falsified documents.

In a statement adopted following the informal video conference on 25 and 26 February 2021, the members of the European Council called for work to continue on a common approach to vaccination certificates. The Commission is working with Member States on the eHealth network, a voluntary network linking national authorities responsible for eHealth, to prepare for the interoperability of vaccination certificates. The guidelines were adopted on 27 January and updated on 12 March, while the draft Framework for Confidence was adopted on 12 March 2021.

The Commission today adopted a legislative proposal establishing a common framework for the creation of a digital green certificate. The Commission has also adopted an additional proposal to ensure that the digital green certificate is also issued to third-country nationals residing in the Member States or the Schengen Associated States and to visitors entitled to travel to other Member States. Separate proposals to cover EU citizens and third-country nationals are necessary for legal reasons; there is no difference in the treatment of EU citizens and third-country beneficiaries for the purposes of certificates.

The latest information provided to us by the Member States on coronavirus measures and travel restrictions is available on the platform Re-open EU.

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