France recognises India's Covishield vaccine for travel
NEW DELHI: France on Saturday said it will accept travellers who are vaccinated with Covishield, the AstraZeneca vaccine manufactured by the Serum Institute of India. It is the 14th EU member to recognise the vaccine for inclusion in the EU green pass, which allows entry to travellers amid the Covid pandemic.
Besides France, Covishield is now recognised for travel to Belgium, Austria, Bulgaria, Estonia, Finland, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Latvia, Netherlands, Slovenia, Spain and Sweden.
Switzerland and Iceland, which are not part of the bloc, had also accepted Covishield as Schengen state.
Meanwhile, the vaccine is yet to be approved in countries like Italy, Croatia, Cyprus, Czechia, Denmark, Estonia, Lithuania, Lichtenstein, Luxembourg, Malta, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania and Slovakia. 14 of these are EU members while Norway and Lichtenstein are non-member states.
France's move follows a global outcry over the fact that the European Union's Covid-19 certificate only recognises AstraZeneca vaccines manufactured in Europe.
Starting Sunday, France will also start requiring anyone who isn't vaccinated arriving from Britain, Spain, Portugal, the Netherlands, Greece or Cyprus to present a negative test less than 24 hours old to cross French borders.
Tunisia, Indonesia, Cuba and Mozambique have now been added to France's "red list" of countries with high virus risk.