Current rules expire on 30 June
Review after six months, scheme can be repealed if no longer needed
Parliament and EU member states’ negotiators have agreed to keep the EU Digital COVID Certificate framework in place for another year, until June 2023.
On Monday evening, negotiating teams from the European Parliament and the Council of the EU reached a deal to prolong the EU Digital COVID Certificate (EUDCC) scheme -set to expire on 30 June- for another 12 months. By extending the legal framework by a year, EU lawmakers want to ensure that EU citizens have the right to free movement in case there is a new variant of concern.
Review after six months
Negotiators have agreed that Member states should refrain from imposing additional restrictions to free movement to EUDCC holders. Member States will only be allowed to do so where such restrictions are necessary, proportionate and non-discriminatory for the purpose of safeguarding public health.
MEPs also ensured that a clause was added asking the Commission to assess if the EUDCC scheme is still needed after six months -at the end of 2022-, based on the latest scientific advice from the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) and the Health Security Committee. At that point, the Commission will also have to issue an overview describing all the developments of the EUDCC at national and international level. The scheme should then be repealed as soon as the epidemiological situation so allows.
The informal deal will now have to be formally adopted by both the Parliament and the Council, in order for it to enter into force by 30 June, when the current rules expire. The vote in plenary is scheduled for the 22-23 June session in Brussels.