Foreign minister backs Estonia's proposal to introduce vaccination certificates for global travel

  • 2021-02-23
  • LETA/TBT Staff

RIGA - Estonia's plan to reenable global travel with the help of vaccination certificates is supportable, Latvian Foreign Minister Edgars Rinkevics (New Unity) told LETA. 

The minister indicated that the idea was discussed during Estonian Foreign Minister Eva-Maria Liimets' visit to Riga last week. 

Rinkevics believes that it is necessary to work on this project with interested authorities in Latvia to figure out how the system could be introduced. The minister also noted that all countries should immunize their populations as soon as possible, admitting at the same time that all countries are having problems with vaccine deliveries and logistics. 

"In my opinion, the creation and use of such vaccine certificates would be a good thing, and the broader its scope, the better. But we should be realistic - it would take a while before the system could start working," Rinkevics said, explaining that first it is necessary vaccinate a sufficient number of people. 

As reported, Estonia is at work on a project in the cross-border recognition of vaccination certificates, which Estonia is engaging in together with the World Health Organization (WHO).

According to Estonia's plan, the first stage of the project would see Estonia, Sweden, Finland, Latvia and Lithuania create a "safe travel bubble", which later would be expanded by including other countries that would agree to join the project. 

Iceland, Hungary, Serbia and the Seychelles have already expressed interest in the project. Talks on vaccination certificates are under way not only with neighbor countries like Finland but also with more distant countries like Japan, New Zealand and Australia.