The European Tourism Manifesto alliance, more than 60 public and private tourism organisations and the representatives of the sector in Europe fully support the European Commission’s proposal to establish a compatible and mutually accepted Digital Green Certificate that will facilitate free movement and promote the restart of travel.
The digital certificate would allow a quicker and safer movement of citizens and restart tourism in the EU by showing proof if a person has been vaccinated against the Coronavirus, has recovered from the virus, or has provided a negative test, SchengenVisaInfo.com reports.
The EU has reported that these certificates will only be used for travel within the European Union countries for the time being.
“The Digital Green Certificate proposal released today is a major step in the right direction. But time is of essence now. We need a clear plan outlining conditions and timing to prepare for the safe restart of travel and tourism in Europe to be ready for the critical summer season 2021! Europe should work on this together, leaving no place for fragmentation and unilateral actions,” the Chairman of the European Tourism Manifesto alliance and the European Travel Commission’s CEO, Eduardo Santander, said.
Airports Council International (ACI EUROPE) announced that together with Industry associations Airlines for Europe, Aerospace and Defence Industries Association of Europe, European Regions Airline Association, and International Air Transport Association, they see these certificates as an essential instrument to assist a safe and sufficient recovery of travel and tourism in Europe.
They all request the EU Council and the European Parliament to approve the proposal of the Commission as soon as possible and for all EU States to start planning and implementation.
“The onus is now on member states and the European Parliament to adopt this new initiative, and we urge them to take the necessary steps to implement it as a matter of urgency,” President and CEO of World Travel and Tourism Council Gloria Guevara said regarding the Commission’s work.
The associations ask the EU governments to make sure that the certificates are functional by the summer months, especially the vaccination certificates, recognising that in order to travel, vaccination is not mandatory.
According to ACI Europe, a recent poll has shown that 54 per cent of participants intend to travel by the end of July 2021, disclosing the necessity for unrestricted movement. Another 41 per cent aspire to travel to another country in Europe, and 89 per cent of people approve that governments’ need to standardise these certificates.
Furthermore, ACI Europe asserts that a roadmap plan is essential to start air travel since the aviation industry is operating at a limited capacity. Therefore, a prosperous restart would bring aircraft and terminals back on duty.
The most recent figures released by ACI Europe show that the situation is critical in the EU, EEA, Switzerland and the UK, which suffered a decrease of 89.3 per cent of passengers in February 2021 compared to last year.