Japan to begin accepting requests for vaccine passports from July 26

Japan Today -- Jul 12
Japan will start accepting applications for so-called vaccine passports from July 26 for people who have been fully inoculated against COVID-19 to travel internationally, the top government spokesman said Sunday.

The government will also consider whether to use such certificates for domestic economic activities in response to a request to do so made by business circles, Chief Cabinet Secretary Katsunobu Kato said on an NHK TV program.

But "we should never allow people to be discriminated against or forced unfairly according to whether they have been vaccinated or not," he said during the TV program.

The vaccination certificates will be official records issued by municipalities showing a person has been fully vaccinated against COVID-19, with information such as name, passport number and date of vaccination also included.

Kato said last month the certificates will be issued by the end of July, initially in paper form. A digital format will be considered later.

The country's largest business lobby, the Japan Business Federation, known as Keidanren, has proposed using the certificates for raising event attendance caps and for restaurant discounts in Japan.

The European Union and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations are also introducing vaccination certificates for international travelers from their member states.

Japan is looking to have its vaccination passports accepted by over 10 nations, including Italy, France and Greece, according to government sources. It hopes the countries will exempt holders from quarantine requirements or reduce quarantine periods.

- Japan Today