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EU Commission Proposes Several Changes to the EU Digital COVID Certificate

The European Commission plans to make several changes to the EU’s COVID digital certificate, as the idea of ​​creating such a document refers to almost one year.

In a proposal revealed on Thursday, February 3, the EU Commission recommended some limited amendments to regulation on the issuance and use of the bloc’s COVID certificate, while also proposing that it remain in effect for another year.

“The European Commission is proposing to extend the EU’s COVID digital certification for a period of one year, until 30 June 2023. The Commission is adopting the proposal today to ensure that the European Parliament and the Council can finalize legislative action in time before the current regulation,” the commission notes in a press release issued regarding the proposal.

The same also lists the following, as changes that must be made to the regulation in order to better adapt it to the evolution of the epidemiological situation:

List antigen tests performed in laboratories as certifiable tests due to the high demand for COVID-19 tests. Ensure that the correct number of doses of the COVID-19 vaccine is included in the certificates even when an EU citizen receives doses in different Member States. Issuance of certification to participants in trials of new COVID-19 vaccines in an effort to encourage the development of such vaccines.

At the same time, the EU Commission highlights that the use of EU digital COVID certificates for domestic purposes remains an issue that must be decided by member states, for their territories. The Committee also highlights that the Certificate Regulation does not stipulate nor prohibit the use of the document for such purposes.

In the press release, the Commission explains: “When a Member State establishes a COVID-19 certification system for domestic purposes, it must continue to ensure that the EU’s COVID digital certification is fully accepted for these purposes.”

It also encourages Member States to align the validity of certificates used for domestic purposes with the validity period specified for travel purposes at the EU level.

In order to force the changes before June 30 this year, when the regulation on certification is set to expire, the Commission called on the EU Parliament and the Council to adopt the proposal as soon as possible.

The Commission is due to publish a second report on the EU’s COVID Digital Certification Regulation by the end of next month. The first report was published in October 2021.

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