Europe must agree common digital certification for those who have been vaccinated against Covid-19 to allow them to travel freely within Europe without the need for testing, Iata has said.
The association has called on the European Commission to support the initiative championed by Greek prime minister Kyriakos Mitostakis in a letter to the commission’s president Ursula von der Leyen.
Iata chief Alexandre de Juniac said EU states must coordinate on a policy that maximises the economic and social benefits of freedom of movement as Europe seeks to emerge from the Covid crisis.
"Vaccination is a fundamental key to safely reopening borders and stimulating economic recovery," said de Juniac.
"A pan-European mutually recognised vaccination certificate would be an important step towards giving governments the confidence to safely open their borders, and passengers the confidence to fly without the barrier of quarantine."
Iata said the need for aviation to restart in a safe, harmonious fashion was "more urgent than ever in the face of renewed lockdowns and travel restrictions across the world".
It has called on EU member states to plan effectively to ensure travel can be maximised through a combination of increasingly levels of vaccination and greater testing capabilities.
“We are in very dark days of this pandemic," said de Juniac. "But the tough measures taken combined with accelerating vaccination programs must give us hope that we can safely re-establish the freedom of movement.
"That will save jobs, ease mental anguish, re-connect families and revive the economy. To do this safely and efficiently, planning is key. Prime minister Mitsotakis’s proposal for vaccine certificates will be a key enabler.
"Progress on eliminating or reducing quarantines can be made with testing protocols. But what we need now is for governments to start working together much more effectively.
"Unilateral government actions were able to quickly dismantle global connectivity. Re-building will need coordination."
The proposal will be put before EU heads of state on Thursday (21 January).