This morning the EU Commission welcomes the political agreement on the EU COVID-19 certifficate that once formally approved by the EU Parliament and the EU Council is expected to enter into frce next 1st July with a phasing-in period of six weeks for the issuance of certificates for those Member States that need additional time.
In parallel, the Commission will continue to support the Member States in finalising their national solutions for the issuance and verification of EU Digital COVID Certificate, and to provide technical and financial support to Member States to on-board the gateway.
The certificate is a proof that a person has been vaccinated against COVID-19, received a negative test result or recovered from COVID-19. It will be available, free of charge, in digital or paper format. It will include a QR code to ensure security and authenticity of the certificate.
The Commission has built a digital infrastructure connecting national IT systems, to exchange the public keys needed for verification between all national public key directories. Like that all certificate signatures the one of the COVID certifficate can be verified across the EU. The infrastructure will run on a server in the Commission’s corporate data centre which is located in Luxembourg.
Going further on the travel restrictions waiver field, the European Council decided last Wedenesday 19th May to open EU frontiers to travellers who are vaccinated and come from countries where they are administrated vaccines against the COVID-19 also approved by the EMA.
Key features of the EU COVID certificate
Following the agreement reached by the European Parliament and the Council, the EU Digital COVID Certificate:
1.- will cover vaccination, test and recovery;
2.- will be available in a digital and paper-based format, depending on the choice of the recipients, and contain a digitally signed QR code;
3.- will be free of charge, be obtained easily and also available to persons vaccinated before the EU Digital COVID Certificate Regulation has entered into force;
4.- may also be used by Member States for national purposes, if this is provided for in national law.
5.- Member States shall refrain from imposing additional travel restrictions on the holders of an EU Digital COVID Certificate, unless they are necessary and proportionate to safeguard public health.
6.- The Commission will also mobilise €100 million to support Member States in providing affordable tests
Free of charge, secure, accessible to all and respectul with EU citizens’ rights, von der Leyen underscores
“We are delivering on our commitment to have the EU Digital COVID Certificate up and running before the summer. European citizens are looking forward to travelling again, and today’s agreement means they will be able to do so safely very soon.
The EU Digital COVID Certificate is free of charge, secure and accessible to all. It will cover vaccination, test and recovery offering different options to the citizens. It fully respects citizens’ fundamental rights, including protection of personal data,” Ursula von der Leyen said today.
And she added: “All EU citizens have a fundamental right to free movement in the EU. The EU Digital COVID Certificate, available in paper or digital format, will make it easier for Europeans to travel – whether to see their families and loved ones or to get some well-deserved rest.
We would like to thank the European Parliament and the Portuguese Presidency for their dedication, perseverance and immense work at record speed to find an agreement on the proposal we presented.
Work still remains. At EU level, the system will be ready in the next few days. It is now crucial that all Member States press ahead with the roll-out of their national systems to ensure that the system can be up and running as soon as possible. This is what EU citizens rightly expect.
Today’s agreement has demonstrated that with the commitment and cooperation of all, the EU Digital COVID Certificate will be available on time,” The President of the EU Commission.”