EU: 'Real split' over vaccine passport idea says expert
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Spain is currently welcoming back UK arrivals without any testing or vaccination requirements, despite the fact it remains on the UK’s amber list for travel. However, as of June 7, the nation is set to take part in a pilot scheme testing out how the European Union’s (EU) “digital green pass”.
The travel certificate will work a lot like a Covid passport and hold the medical data of travellers.
The President of the Spanish government says the initiative is “great news for the tourism sector in the new stage of hope” that has opened with vaccination.
Pedro Sánchez said the implementation of the COVID digital or green certificate will facilitate mobility among European citizens.
He announced Spain’s participation in this test in his speech at the opening in Soria of the IV National Fair for the Repopulation of Rural Spain.
Mr Sanchez highlighted the good evolution of the vaccination process and linked it with the economic recovery.
Mobility, he said, was essential, especially in a country like Spain whose economy is closely linked to the tourism sector.
Mr Sánchez explained that Spain has participated in all the pilot projects of the European Commission for the implementation of the covid digital certificate that is expected to be in force at the beginning of July.
But before its definitive implementation, he confirmed Spain is going to be among the countries of the European Union that are going to carry out a general test of this certificate as of June 7.
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“This test will be decisive to launch that certificate before the summer,” he said.
Under the digital green pass, both vaccinated and non-vaccinated holidaymakers will still be able to travel.
It was previously revealed that the pass will hold information regarding whether or not a traveller has had one or two of their vaccines.
It will also show testing history, as well as whether or not a person has previously contracted and recovered from COVID-19.
Whether or not Britons will be able to travel to Spain at the time of the pilot scheme is uncertain.
The UK is due to have its next review of the “traffic light” list in the first week of June.
Following speculation that the Canary or Balearic Islands may be added to the green list, Secretary of State for Transport Grant Shapps warned Britons any changes can only be done if the regions meet specific criteria.
He said: “We have always said in the past we have tried to assess islands separately.
“Whether that is possible or not isn’t just down to the level of infection on those islands, it’s also down to their ability to sequence the genomes that we know about, the variants or potential variants of concern on those islands as well.”
Mr Shapps added: “Not to disappoint you but the next review is the first week in June, so not very far away, and I’m afraid we will have to wait until then.”
Spain’s current position on the amber list means returning holidaymakers are required to take three separate COVID-19 tests and quarantine for 10 days in the UK.
Additional reporting by Rita Sobot.
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