PRESS RELEASE 058
State Secretary for EU commits to operational digital mobility certificate by June
23/03/2021

The State Secretary for the European Union, Juan González-Barba, has taken part today by video-conference in the General Affairs Council of the EU. The meeting served as a preparatory meeting for the upcoming informal video-conference of the members of the European Council and provided for an exchange of perspectives on the coordination measures to fight the pandemic and to re-establish mobility with a view to the summer. In this regard, Juan González Barba claimed that Spain advocates all measures that could help recover mobility while protecting public health.


The ministers welcome the proposal made by the European Commission for a Regulation on the establishment of a digital certificate that fosters the resumption of mobility. The State secretary, Juan González-Barba, welcomed the immediate start of both legal and logistical work and underlined the importance of negotiations progressing as quickly as possible so that the certificate can be operational by June, before the summer tourist season.


The foreign affairs ministers agreed that the gravity of the situation requires the production, delivery and rollout efforts of the vaccines to be stepped up and stressed the importance of the current travel restrictions. They also addressed the export of vaccines outside of the EU and the donation of vaccines to developing countries.


Within the framework of preparations for the upcoming meeting of the Heads of State and Government of the EU, the ministers also discussed the functioning of the internal market and the importance of a revision of the EU’s industrial policy, which the European Commission will present in April, together with the digital transformation and the data economy, and the efforts on digital taxation within a European and international framework.


Against this backdrop, the State Secretary for the EU stressed the need to identify those important areas for improving the strategic autonomy of the EU.
Juan González-Barba underlined that the digital transition must not leave anyone behind and recalled the importance of developing the Social Pillar of the EU, highlighting the importance of the EU Social Summit that will be held in Porto in the month of May.


The foreign affairs ministers also addressed the state of the preparations for the Conference on the Future of Europe. Juan González-Barba recalled that, above all, this must be a Conference that deals with questions of interest for European citizens. And he also called for institutions to facilitate to the utmost the participation of Spain’s co-official languages on the Conference’s multilingual digital platform.


Lastly, along with other Member States, the State secretary regretted Turkey’s withdrawal from the Istanbul Convention on the prevention of and fight against violence against women and domestic violence, which he described as “bad news” for the promotion and protection of the rights of women in both Turkey and in the rest of the world.

 

 

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