European Business Aviation cautiously welcomes agreement on ‘EU Digital COVID Certificate’, urges swift and harmonised implementation by Member States
21 May 2021, Brussels. Today the European Business Aviation Association (EBAA) cautiously welcomes the provisional agreement for an EU Digital COVID19 Certificate and urges EU and EFTA Member States to implement the agreement swiftly and in a harmonised manner across the board.
The agreement covering the EU Digital COVID Certificate (previously known as the ‘Digital Green Certificate) aims to facilitate safe, free movement inside the EU, and should be in place for 12 months. The certificate will not be a precondition to exercise the right to free movement and will not be considered a travel document, and;
- Will cover vaccination, test and recovery;
- Will be available in a digital and paper-based format, depending on the choice of the recipients, and contain a digitally signed QR code;
- 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;
- May also be used by Member States for national purposes, if this is provided for in national law.
While EBAA welcomes the significant step towards the full restoration of freedom of movement around the EU for travellers including Business aviation passengers, it cautions that the provisional political agreement still allows for additional restrictions, such as testing or quarantines.
Commenting on the provisional agreement, EBAA Secretary-General Athar Husain Khan said: “The last few months demonstrated that the rationales to impose restrictions can vary significantly around the EU and are very much a matter of appreciation of national governments and authorities.”
Continuing, Husain Khan adds: “The Business aviation community hopes and expects that more than a year into the pandemic and with the epidemiological situation improving around the continent, additional restrictions, if used, will be streamlined and based on EU recommendations only.”
With the start of the summer season looming, EBAA appeals to all Member States to make every effort to ensure the EU Digital COVID Certificates can be used efficiently by all Europeans as soon as possible.
Furthermore, aviation, including Business aviation, is a global industry. Interoperability with other regional or third countries’ systems will be required to avoid a multiplicity of redundant systems or applications creating unnecessary confusion for travellers, passengers, operators and government authorities.