Nfp when to abstain from voting

Quarantine should fall for many EU countries

High incidence areas are excluded from this. From countries that are colored green or orange on the ECDC card, entry is possible without any restrictions. When entering from bright red areas, according to the plans of the Ministry of Health, a negative coronavirus test or proof of vaccination or recovery after a coronavirus infection will be sufficient in the future.

For travelers from dark red areas, on the other hand, the ten-day quarantine obligation should continue to exist after entry with a free test from the fifth day. It is not yet clear whether the classification, like the EU Health Agency, will be differentiated by region. In any case, the rules should apply to tourists from abroad as well as to Austrians who want to enter Austria.

Several holiday countries among them

From the current perspective, the current quarantine obligation for popular holiday countries such as Italy, Spain and Greece as well as for the main country of origin of the guests in this country would be eliminated on May 19: Germany. Like Austria and most EU countries, these countries are currently red on the ECDC traffic light. Only Finland, Iceland, Portugal and Malta are currently completely green or orange.

Travel measures as recommended by the ECDC

From the current perspective, however, travelers from countries such as France, Sweden, the Netherlands, Slovenia, Croatia, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Estonia and Lithuania would have to continue to quarantine. In the case of Romania, only the region around Bucharest is currently dark red. The applicable exemptions for commuters are to remain in place. The Ministry of Health wants to regularly amend the entry regulation based on the EU CoV traffic light.

These are published by the ECDC every Thursday. It depends on the EU member states, which have to reliably report their data every Tuesday. If the 14-day incidence is below 25 cases per 100,000 inhabitants and the rate of positive tests is below four percent, the area is green. Orange is an area below the incidence of 50, but when the positivity rate is four percent or higher, or when the incidence is between 25 and 150 and the positivity rate is below four percent.

Red means when the incidence is between 50 and 150 and the test positivity rate is four percent or greater, or when the incidence is greater than 150 but less than 500. All areas beyond this information are dark red and gray if insufficient data are available.

"Green Pass" in several stages

From May 19, Austria will probably also use its own “Green Pass”. At the beginning, this should be nothing more than a negative test result, proof of a survived coronavirus infection or an entry in the vaccination certificate. However, this only applies if the SPÖ approves a corresponding change in the law and thus cancels the relevant Federal Council blockade, which will last until May 25th.

When and how are openings useful?

If this is not done (as part of a special meeting), vaccinated people would have to go for a test for another six days before the proof of vaccination becomes an “access card”. According to the Chancellery, it is planned that the various documents will be bundled in a QR code as quickly as possible. According to the APA, this will probably take until the beginning of June. It will be like the Austrian “Green Pass”. This will be followed by a European variant that will regulate summer tourism across borders.

EU Parliament votes on Wednesday

The EU Parliament wants to vote on its negotiating position on the European "Green Passport" on Wednesday evening. The result of the vote will be announced on Thursday morning. In their preliminary draft, the MEPs are calling, among other things, for free or inexpensive tests across Europe and high data protection rules. Only those vaccines that have been approved by the European Medicines Agency (EMA) should also be considered vaccines. This means that vaccines such as the Russian "Sputnik V" are no longer applicable. Austrian MEPs are divided on this.

It was "nice work in the pandemic after a year of defensive" to enable opening steps in the "offensive", said ÖVP MEP Lukas Mandl on Tuesday in front of the media. However, he demands that the approval of vaccines should not be restricted to the EMA, but should also be based on the list of the World Health Organization (WHO). He also hopes, Mandl continues, that the EU states will not introduce any quarantine regulations despite the "green passport".

A few technical questions also seem to have not yet been fully clarified. He cannot say yet whether there will be different QR codes for Europe and Austria, says Mandl. According to the ÖVP EU MP Barbara Thaler, Austria applied for a pilot phase in May.

SPÖ sees opportunities, FPÖ criticized

Meanwhile, Andreas Schieder, head of the SPÖ-EU delegation, emphasized in a broadcast that an “efficient vaccination program and travel certificates are essential for our way back to normal”. The “Green Pass” only has a chance if “there are enough vaccinations and the highest data protection standards are observed”. He also calls for “a wide range of free PCR and antigen testing throughout Europe”.

Meanwhile, sharp criticism came from the Freedom Party. "The green EU passport does not bring freedom back to the citizens, it above all brings more control for the citizens," said FPÖ-EU mandate Roman Haider. There is already an international vaccination certificate that has proven itself. In addition, the “Green Pass” says nothing about “the infectiousness of the owner”, Haider continues. There are no valid data available as to whether vaccinated or recovered people could still be carriers of the disease.

Greens abstain

For this reason, the three Austrian Greens will abstain on Wednesday. "We fear that this vaccination certificate can lead to recklessness," said Thomas Waitz, Member of the European Union for the Greens and co-chair of the European Green Party, in a press conference. His party colleague Sarah Wiener explained: "We cannot pretend we do not know about the problem of the possible transmission of viruses despite vaccination."

Claudia Gamon, NEOS MEP, emphasized that “interoperability must be clearly guaranteed” and that tests must be “affordable and easily accessible”. "It's not extra freedom, it's a return to fundamental freedoms," said Gamon. She affirmed that with the "Green Passport" only vaccines approved by the EMA would be recognized - otherwise the "Approval for the fish" would be recognized. For people who have been vaccinated with "Sputnik V", for example, the suggestion provides for "sufficient alternatives" such as testing. In addition, it could well be that, until the certificate is ready for use, “Sputnik is already approved in the EU”.