Rules for EU visitors from UK and US to be discussed by ambassadors
EU ambassadors are due to meet tomorrow to discuss a general EU plan to facilitate the arrival of visitors from third countries such as the UK and the US.
One idea that permanent representatives of EU states to the EU will discuss is to increase the incidence rate of Covid for countries from which vacationers can be allowed. It is currently only 25 cases per 100,000, but it is proposed to increase it to 100, which would include the UK (45) but not, at present, the US (176) .
This proposal was presented by the European Commission.
Currently, the EU officially recommends allowing only visits from a restricted “green list” from Australia, New Zealand, Rwanda, Singapore, South Korea, Thailand and, under reciprocity reserve, from China.
However, individual countries do not necessarily adhere to this and France, for example, already allows UK visitors.
The agenda should also include ideas such as how to integrate non-EU countries into the EU’s planned ‘digital green certificate’ scheme, which will allow free travel for those with the proof of being vaccinated against Covid, having had a recent test or having had the disease and recovering from it.
It is hoped that this could, for example, mean that British visitors who have been fully vaccinated, could come to France this summer without testing or having to self-isolate in France. It is not known, however, if this could be subject to reciprocity.
It comes as Europe’s Minister Clément Beaune has said legislation on the French version of the certificate, called a “health passport”, is expected to be passed in the coming days. It should be operational in mid-June.
President Macron also spoke of “ welcoming the return of vaccinated tourists ” from June 9, but there have been no details on this so far, nor of France’s plan for a traffic light system for French residents traveling to non-European destinations’ ‘, since the end of May’.
An EU diplomat said The connection: “Clément Beaune declared that the number one priority was to ensure a return to free movement within the EU itself, and then to take care of non-European foreigners.
“But the entry of non-European foreigners will undoubtedly happen tomorrow, with several different elements to discuss, although I cannot say if there will be a final agreement tomorrow; it will probably take a little longer.
“Among the issues is the issue of the incidence rate for country classification, which was only 16 last summer; now the Commission is proposing that it be 100 instead.
“There is also the question of an ’emergency brake’ measure if a new variant arises causing disruption, which does not yet exist today, which would allow pan-European measures to react to it.”
He said he could not comment on the situation in the UK and US as the initial plan is to treat all countries on generalized criteria.
What could France’s traffic light plan mean for summer travel abroad?
The French health pass will be valid for travel within the EU