Our expectation is Indians vaccinated in India would be treated 'at par' with those vaccinated in EU: MEA

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Ministry of External Affairs spokesperson Arindam Bagchi
Ministry of External Affairs spokesperson Arindam Bagchi

New Delhi [India], July 2 (ANI): India on Friday said it expects Indians vaccinated through domestic vaccination programme would be treated "at par" with those vaccinated in the European Union (EU) countries and the CoWin vaccination certificate would be recognised by the 27-member bloc on a reciprocal basis.

The EU has introduced the EU Digital COVID Certificate framework to facilitate safe free movement during the COVID pandemic and it came into effect on July 1.

India had conveyed to the European Union that it will introduce a "reciprocal policy" only allowing ease of travel for those European countries that recognise Indian vaccines Covishield and Covaxin.

"Our expectation is that Indians vaccinated through our domestic vaccination programme would be treated at par with those vaccinated in the EU and the CoWin vaccination certificate would be recognised by the EU on a reciprocal basis," Ministry of External Affairs' spokesperson Arindam Bagchi said during a weekly briefing.

"As you are aware such CoWin vaccination certificate can be authenticated on CoWin website itself and we are in touch in this regard for reciprocal acceptance," he added.

Under the EU Digital COVID Certificate framework, persons vaccinated with vaccines authorised by the European Medicines Agency (EMA) will be exempted from travel restrictions within the EU.

However, individual member states have the flexibility to also accept vaccines that have been authorised at the national level or by the World Health Organization.

India had requested EU member states to individually consider extending the exemption to those persons who have taken Covishield and Covaxin and said it will institute a reciprocal policy for recognition of the EU Digital COVID Certificate, according to sources.

Several European countries have approved the Serum Institute of India-manufactured Covishield vaccine for travellers.

According to sources, Austria, Germany, Slovenia, Greece, Iceland, Ireland, Estonia and Spain have confirmed accepting Covishield for travel entry. Switzerland has also allowed Covishield for the Schengen state.

"I understand a number of EU countries have already taken positive steps in this direction," Bagchi noted. (ANI)

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