France 'actively working' on India's concerns over Covishield's absence from EU Green Pass

New Delhi, IndiaWritten By: Sidhant SibalUpdated: Jun 29, 2021, 03:18 PM IST

Covishield Photograph:(AFP)

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Approved vaccines are Comirnaty (Pfizer), Janssen (Johnson & Johnson), Spikevax (Moderna), and Vaxzevria (AstraZeneca) which is the same vaccine as Covishield

France is "actively working" on the issue of Covishield's absence on the European Union "Green Pass" after the matter was raised bilaterally by India.The EU Green Pass comes into effect from the July 1 and lists four approved vaccines that do not include India-made Covishield. 

Approved vaccines are Comirnaty (Pfizer), Janssen (Johnson & Johnson), Spikevax (Moderna), and Vaxzevria (AstraZeneca) which is the same vaccine as Covishield.

French government sources said, "We are aware of the issue. We are working on it actively."

The inclusion of Covishield for the EU Green Pass for travel can only be done by European Medicines Agency or EMA-market authorised vaccines but additional vaccines could be included. EMA doesn't decide the list on the pass but the member states have some flexibility to adapt the list for their national pass.

For market authorisation of Covishield for use in the EU, the Serum Institute of India needs to apply for EMA, which then conducts a verification of the production site, etc. 

"Vaccine called Covishield does not currently have a marketing authorisation... Covishield as such is not currently approved under EU rules", EMA told WION yesterday.

SII hasn't applied yet for EMA authorisation with assurance coming from its Chief Adar Poonawalla that the matter would be resolved soon.

EU's Green Pass aims to facilitate the safe free movement of its nationals in the EU during the COVID-19 pandemic. EU member countries are using it already. Green Pass or simplified--EU Digital COVID Certificate is digital proof that a person has either been vaccinated against COVID-19, received a negative test result, or recovered from COVID-19.