The European Union has been discussing a possibility to introduce vaccine passports for a few weeks now. The problem has raised a lot of questions both inside and outside the EU. Many are strongly opposed to such an initiative, but it appears that the implementation of such passports is inevitable.
According to Euronews TV channel, which refers a source in the EU, the would-be vaccine passports for free movement in EU countries will be valid only for those individuals, who were vaccinated with EMA-approved vaccines (the European Medicines Agency).
A source in the European Union told Euronews that the Green Pass proposal, which is to be put forward on March 17 to facilitate free movement within the EU, will only embrace vaccinations conducted with EMA-approved drugs. Unapproved vaccines from other companies do not fall under EU's quality control regulations, Euronews said.
The source also said that Didier Reynders, a member of the European Commission for Justice, made it clear that EU member states are free to vaccinate their citizens with other drugs, but they will not be able to receive a licensed travel certificate unless they have been vaccinated with one of the approved drugs. For the time being, the EMA has approved four of them - Pfizer-BioNtech, AstraZeneca, Moderna and Johnson&Johnson.
It was also promised that vaccine passports would be valid only until the end of the pandemic. However, there is nothing more permanent than temporary.
EU officials are actually setting up a barrier for those EU citizens who have been vaccinated with Russian or Chinese vaccines. They do not have EMA registrations. It appears that the EMA is considering Sputnik V, but the process may last indefinitely for far-fetched reasons.
One may assume that the EU is creating another obstacle to complicate the spread of the Russian vaccine in European countries.
Generally speaking, the implementation of the vaccine passports initiative looks like an endeavour to save the tourist season. It is not clear, though, whether Russian tourists will be able to visit European countries after vaccine passports become reality. It appears that the answer is negative.
The Vaccine Curtain is already falling before our very eyes. At the same time, there are still many questions as to how the European vaccine passport is going to work.
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