The Council of the European Union on Friday agreed to extend the regulation establishing the EU Digital COVID Certificate.
Following ongoing developments of the pandemic, including the emergence of the Omicron variant, the European Commission in February had proposed to extend the regulation establishing the certificate by one year, until 30 June 2023.
The EU Digital COVID Certificate originally expires on 30 June 2022.
In order for the extension to be adopted in time before the expiry date, the Council and the European Parliament must reach an agreement under the ordinary legislative procedure before that date.
It is noted that the European Commission’s proposal in February had also introduced other targeted amendments such as extending the range of authorised antigen tests for which a test certificate can be issued and ensuring that vaccination certificates contain the correct overall number of doses administered in any EU state and not just in the member state issuing the certificate.
The main changes made on Friday by the Council to the Commission’s proposals are as follows:
– an obligation for the Commission to submit a detailed report by 1 February 2023 has been added. This report could be accompanied by legislative proposals to allow for a reassessment of the need to repeal or extend the certificate, depending on developments in the health situation;
– the possibility for Member States to request proof of identity and a vaccination or recovery certificate has been introduced in order to be able to include all doses in a vaccination certificate, regardless of the place of vaccination. This possibility would make it easier for Member States to fulfil their obligation to issue a valid vaccination certificate, regardless of the place of vaccination;
– the possibility to issue a certificate of recovery following an antigen test has been introduced in order to take into account both the adoption by the Commission of a delegated act which makes it possible to issue a certificate of recovery following a rapid antigen test and the new possibility provided for in the legislative proposal to use other types of antigen tests.
Press here for information provided by the Council on the EU Digital COVID Certificate.