European Commissioner for Justice Didier Reynders recently called for Member States of the European Union to lift the last remaining travel restrictions within the bloc.
Speaking after the European Commission adopted the second report on the EU Digital COVID Certificate’s impact and implementation across the EU, Commissioner Reynders said that Member States have issued over 1.7 billion certificates, facilitating free movement at a time when travel was restricted due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
The EU Digital COVID Certificate launched in July 2021.
“The EU Digital COVID Certificate has proven to be a reliable and easy-to-use tool, allowing citizens to travel during the CovidD-19 pandemic,” he said.
The report showed that the EU Certificate has become a global standard, connecting not only the 27 EU Member States, but also 35 third countries to the EU system.
Commission aims for swift return to unrestricted free movement
“As the situation evolves, the Commission is working to ensure a swift return to unrestricted free movement. We urge Member States to lift the last remaining travel restrictions – particularly where domestic measures are also being lifted,” the commissioner added.
In February 2022, the Commission proposed to extend the EU Digital COVID Certificate Regulation until 30 June 2023.
According to the Commission, the proposed extension aims to ensure its operability beyond its initial expiry date of June 2022, as it is unclear to date how the situation will evolve after the summer.