The European Commission welcomed the provisional political agreement reached by the European Parliament and the Council on the extension of the EU Digital COVID Certificate by one year, following the Commission’s proposal. The extension will allow persons to continue using their certificate to travel across the EU past the Regulation’s initial expiry date of June 30, 2022.
Commissioner for Justice, Didier Reynders, said: “Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, we have seen the situation evolve constantly, and so have our tools. With over 1.8 billion certificates issued, two things are clear: the epidemiological situation can change fast, and the EU Digital COVID Certificate has been a key instrument to help us through the changing tides.”
“We are committed to a return to unrestricted free movement, and we welcome the decision taken by some Member States to lift all travel restrictions, including the presentation of a COVID Certificate. Today’s deal will help us continue to facilitate free and safe travel, should a rise in infections make it necessary for the Member States to temporarily reintroduce restrictions.”
The European Parliament and the Council also agreed to introduce some additional changes to the EU Digital COVID Certificate system, so that it is even more accessible to citizens. In particular, Member States will be able to issue certificates to participants of clinical trials and will recognize additional types of antigen tests.