ACI EUROPE & IATA Call on EU Member States to Lift Travel Restrictions for Those Vaccinated & Recovered

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ACI EUROPE and the International Air Transport Association (IATA) have encouraged European Governments to remove all travel rules for those who have been fully vaccinated and those who have recovered from COVID-19.

“This new regime, set out by an EU Council Recommendation adopted on January 25, is based on the health status of travellers, rather than the epidemiological situation of their country or area of origin. Independent research conducted in Finland and Italy provides insight into developing a Europe-wide policy for removing restrictions,” IATA and ACI EUROPE said in a joint press release.

The request brings out as an argument an analysis conducted by Oxera and Edge Health, which has found that pre-departure testing in Finland and Italy was ineffective in avoiding the spread of the Omicron variant.

The European Union Council, on a recommendation issued on January 25 for the Member States, has demanded that all restrictions be lifted for travellers holding an EU digital certificate which confirms that its holder has been vaccinated with at least two COVID-19 vaccines in the last 270 days, has recovered from COVID-19 in the last 180 days, or holds negative results of a PCR test taken in the previous 72 hours or the last 24 hours if it is a rapid antigen test, reports.

“This means that a traveller’s COVID-19 vaccination, test or recovery status, as evidenced by a valid EU digital COVID certificate, should be the key determinant. A person-based approach will substantially simplify the applicable rules and will provide additional clarity and predictability to travellers,” the Council had noted in a press release announcing the recommendation.

Based on this recommendation, ACI EUROPE and IATA urge those EU countries which continue to deviate from the common EU framework to align their COVID-19 entry measures with it ASAP.

The Director-General of ACI EUROPE, Oliver Jankovec, has supported the new initiative of the EU Council for a ‘person-based approach,’ agreeing that both vaccinated and recovered travellers should not be subjected to any restriction.

“We now have further proof – travel restrictions do have a significant effect – but it’s not on public health, it’s on economic stability and livelihoods. In short: they are causing more harm than good,”  he also insisted.

Due to the declining prevalence of the Omicron variant, a large proportion of Member States has recently eased travel restrictions by removing testing obligations and shortening quarantine periods, which were previously imposed amid the spread of the Omicron variant.

source : schengenvisainfo

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