Trips from Brazil to Europe will be excluded from the new rules for reopening to tourists, announced on Monday (3) by the European Commission (EU executive).
According to the proposal sent to the European Council (which brings together the governments of the member countries), entry into the Schengen zone (which allows free internal transit and also includes Norway, Iceland, Switzerland and Liechtenstein; Ireland is not included) will be authorized for travelers from the region with a controlled epidemiological situation, which is not the case in Brazil at the moment.
The Commission proposes to impose a limit of 100 new cases per 100,000 inhabitants in 14 days, which could increase the number of countries considered to be “green zones” from 7 to around 40 – including Mexico, South Africa. South, Indonesia, Saudi Arabia, Japan and Russia (the list is reviewed by the Council every two weeks).
In Brazil, according to the most recent data from the ECDC (European Center for Disease Control), the current contagion rate is four times the new maximum limit: 400 new cases per 100,000 inhabitants in 14 days.
The Commission is also proposing to make entry flexible for anyone who has taken both doses of a vaccine authorized by the EU or the World Health Organization, at least 14 days before arriving in European territory.
Until this week, the European agency (EMA) has approved immunizers from Pfizer / BioNTech, Moderna, Oxford / AstraZeneca and Janssen. In addition to including these four in its emergency list, WHO is in the final stages of evaluating Chinese Sinovac and Sinopharm – Russian Sputinik V is being analyzed, but without a completion date.
The proposal could open the continent to vaccinated Brazilians, but the dissemination of variants should be an obstacle: the Commission proposed an emergency brake to “limit to the strict minimum all travel from affected countries.” [por variantes preocupantes] for the time necessary to implement the appropriate sanitary measures ”.
The proposed standards will be the minimum necessary to enter the Schengen zone, but member countries may still require requirements such as negative PCR tests and quarantines, including for people already vaccinated.
At the same time, the European Union hopes to launch the so-called green digital certificate for European citizens and residents of the bloc by July, with the aim of facilitating internal transit. The app will contain information on vaccination, possible recovery from Covid-19 and negative tests for the disease.
The bloc is also studying security measures to certify the veracity of vaccination certificates and to recognize vaccines applied in countries outside the European Union.
Regardless of the council’s decision, which meets on Wednesday (5), travel is still permitted for healthcare professionals, seasonal agricultural workers, carriers, transit passengers and students, among others. In such cases, each country may impose conditions such as tests and quarantines.
The latest information on the rules applicable to people coming from outside the bloc can be found on the Re-open UE website.