France could be open for travel for vaccinated Americans and other third country nationals as early as May 2021, according to a statement made by French President Emmanuel Macron on CBS News’s ‘Face the Nation.’
According to Macron, the goal is essentially to get France’s population caught up with their vaccinations before they can consider letting other countries’ nationals take holidays in France. Once France is up-to-speed with their vaccines and their target numbers are met, it could be possible to allow tourists to finally enter.
“Because of the fact that we accelerated production in Europe, we are definitely catching up and we will be in the situation to meet our targets with what we have now,” Macron said.
The plan is to begin lifting travel restrictions in May with a more permanent solution than France has implemented thus far, which has been marginally effective at best.
“We will progressively lift the restrictions of the beginning of May, which means that we will organize in the summertime with our professionals in France for French European citizens, but as well for American citizens,” said Macron. He continued, “So, we are working hard to propose a very concrete solution, especially for U.S. citizens who are vaccinated, so with a special pass, I would say.”
It is also possible that the EU’s digital green certificate or ‘vaccine passport’ would be needed for third country nationals to enter.
“We are building a European certificate to facilitate the travels after these restrictions between the different European countries with testing and vaccination.”
The EU has been working on the ‘vaccine passport’ for some months and is expected to roll them out in this time frame. Macron specifically pointed to the possibility of using these ‘vaccine passports’ in the case of Americans, although it is unclear if it will extend further than the US.
“And the idea indeed is altogether to offer that to the American citizen when they decided to vaccinate or with a PCR test being negative. So, the idea is indeed to always control the virus, to maximize the vaccination and to progressively lift the restrictions,” Macron said.
Macron also stressed his view the importance of other third countries meeting vaccination goals in order for France to allow their citizens to enter.
“If we don’t vaccinate in these countries, there is no way to get rid of the virus,” Macron said. “Because if we leave this country is being contaminated by Covid-19 in South and Latin America, in Africa, you will have more and more people being contaminated. You will have new variants and they will come back in our countries. So, I think this is not sufficient just to be focused on the rich countries,” added Macron.
A plan for third countries other than the US and Canada has not been announced.
It is still unclear whether or not these plans will come to fruition, as political leaders of bother the US and France are still working out the fine details of the agreement.