Mario Draghi and European Green Pass

The European health green pass “will be ready in mid-June”. This was stated by the President of the Council Mario Draghi at a press conference at the end of the European Council in Brussels.

With half of the adult population vaccinated by this week, the European Union is looking to summer with optimism for the first time. The variants remain a risk but so far they have not diverted efforts to secure European citizens and restart economic and social activities.

And the green pass, assures Prime Minister Mario Draghi, will arrive in mid-June, in time to encourage the return of tourists at the start of the season. The extraordinary European summit therefore sees an “improvement in the general epidemiological situation”, and begins to organize the “gradual reopening of our societies”.

Draghi explained that among EU leaders “there has been a certain satisfaction with the way in which vaccinations are proceeding a little everywhere”.

The president of the EU Commission Ursula von der Leyen provided the updated and reassuring picture: “This week half of the adults in the EU will have received the first dose”, she said, recalling the “constant progress” made so far thanks to three hundred million inoculated doses, 245 million vaccinations, which immunized 46% of the EU adult population. But that’s not enough, because we need to move forward without slowing down.

“The campaign must accelerate also in the summer. The supplies will continue to arrive in a sufficient way”, assured Draghi. Von der Leyen spoke of nearly a billion doses coming in the second half, “much more than it takes” to immunize all Europeans.

After the adults, it’s up to the kids. At the end of the month, the EMA will decide on the administration of Pfizer to the 12-15 age group, and then we will start thinking about vaccines in schools. However, several questions still remain about the future of immunity.

Von der Leyen reminds the leaders of them. The first is about the duration of coverage, and therefore after how long to get a second vaccination. The duration of the green pass is also linked to this, an aspect on which the Ema will decide. The second question is whether to vaccinate children as well and the third is about how to adapt the sera to the new variants. So far they work against the known ones, but you have to be ready for the emergence of new strains.

For this ECDC will extend the monitoring of variants from Europe to the rest of the world. If the leaders were able to rejoice in the progress on the fight against Covid-19, there is no step forward on the fight against climate change. The 27 only reaffirmed the commitments already made, namely the reduction of emissions by 2030 (-55% compared to 1990) and climate neutrality by 2050. But on how to achieve them, and above all on how to divide the effort, they are still on the high seas . In today’s meeting they should have given some guidance to the EU Commission which is preparing the ‘climate package’, that is twelve legislative proposals which on 14 July will translate the new EU emission reduction targets into concrete commitments. Instead, everything is postponed to a new meeting, because the 27 are still divided between those who want to review the criteria for sharing the efforts to reduce emissions (the founding countries) and those who want to leave the current ones (the Eastern benefit more).

For Prime Minister Draghi “it was important that the various points of view have begun to confront each other and that an appointment has been made when the commission will present the climate plan, which has just been drafted today but is very important and innovative”.

Paulo Bentu

Non-Resident Fellow

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