June 17, 2021
EU Implements Digital COVID-19 Certificate
Thirteen EU member states – Austria, Bulgaria, Croatia, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Germany, Greece, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Poland, and Spain – have commenced issuing an EU digital COVID certificate (COVID passport) through health centers and authorities. The sixteen other states have tested the digital infrastructure and are likely to begin supplying certificates shortly. All member states must issue and accept the certificate by July 1. For those countries that are struggling to meet that deadline, a phasing-in period of six weeks will be allowed.
The certificate verifies whether the traveler has received a recent negative COVID-19 test, been vaccinated, or has recovered from COVID-19 within the EU, and will help streamline travel between the EU countries.
EU member states must accept vaccination certificates for European Medicines Agency-approved vaccines which currently include Comirnaty (Pfizer BioNtech), Moderna, Vaxzevria (AstraZeneca) and Janssen. The certificate will be issued digitally and/or in paper form and will include a QR code to facilitate recognition by each member country. It will be issued free of charge in the language of the issuing country and in English. The digital version can be used on mobile devices and will contain a digital signature to confirm the authenticity. National authorities in each member country will be assigned to issue certificates through test centers, health authorities or via eHealth portals.
Even with the EU COVID certificate program in place, individual countries will still control their own entry restrictions based on the European Union’s guidance, so individuals should check each specific country’s requirements prior to travel.
For further information on the new EU digital COVID certificate, please contact the Sterling Lexicon immigration team.
As Head of Immigration with Sterling Lexicon, Leanne leads a team of specialists who are responsible for ensuring the entire immigration process is smooth and stress-free for clients, assignees and their accompanying family members. She brings over ten years of experience in strategic immigration management, planning and consultation to her role, and has cultivated invaluable knowledge and experience in processing countless global migration applications. As a trusted partner, she consults with clients on everything from policy considerations and cost or efficiency improvements, to the impact of opening offices in new locations. Leanne is a frequent presenter and author on global immigration topics and trends.