Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Denmark, Germany, Greece, Croatia and Poland are the seven countries of the European Union that since Tuesday have begun to issue the first ‘COVID passports’ that will allow tourists to move without restrictions, since this document proves that they have been vaccinated against the coronavirus, that they have overcome the disease or that they have a recent negative test.

It is true that in the German case the beginning is gradual, since for now they only dispense this certificate in some regions or they have only authorized it for one of the three possible options.

They have been the first to start with this mobility system and others are expected to join in the next few days. Among them will be Spain as of June 7, as acknowledged by the Prime Minister, Pedro Sánchez.

The ‘covid passport’ has been formally in force throughout the European Union since June 1, with a transition period for those countries lagging behind to join the project until mid-August.

It is a free, multilingual document that provides basic medical information on the traveler’s coronavirus status, but will not allow the exchange or storage of personal data when the passport holder shows it when traveling.

The aim of the ‘covid passport’ is to safely revive tourism and mobility between EU member states, but it is the member states that can, despite presenting the appropriate document, impose additional restrictions, such as quarantine compliance or PCR testing at the destination.

It is hoped that this will not happen, because it would scupper the idea of the passport, but the 27 members have agreed on an “emergency brake” to establish certain restrictions in the event of a clear worsening of the epidemiological situation in the country. Should this happen, the state in question will have to notify the European Commission and its EU partners of the changes to ensure that the measures are proportionate and non-discriminatory.

Brussels has issued a number of clarifications on the regulation to assist in its implementation. The certificate for vaccinated persons is valid from 14 days after having received the complete vaccination regimen, the PCR tests presented must be done up to 72 hours before the trip and in the case of those who have passed the disease, it is established that their certificate is valid for 180 days.

All these are recommendations to the 27 member states of the European Union and will be analyzed this Wednesday, but for now there is no obligation to follow them.

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