The Swiss authorities have announced that starting from September 13, the COVID-19 certificate will be mandatory for all persons over the age of 16, including tourists, who wish to access indoor areas of restaurants, cultural and leisure facilities, and several other events.
The decision has been taken by the Federal Council during its meeting held on September 8 and will remain effective until January 24, 2022, SchengenVisaInfo.com reports.
“Based on the overall situation, the Federal Council has decided to extend the certificate requirement for persons aged 16 and over. This is to prevent hospitals from being overstretched. It will take two to three weeks for this measure to have an impact on the situation in the hospitals,” the statement of the Federal Council reads.
Based on a press release issued by the Swiss Federal Council, starting from Monday, the certificate will be required to access indoor areas, such as restaurants, bars, theatres, concerts, cinemas, and other private events.
Consequently, all persons who can prove that they have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19, recovered from the disease, or those who have recently tested negative will be able to attend indoor places and several activities in Switzerland without being subject to restrictions.
Access to cultural and leisure activities such as zoos, libraries, museums, fitness centres, water parks, swimming pools, and casinos will also be limited to only COVID-19 certificate holders. In addition, the certificate will also be mandatory for those who wish to access indoor sporting and cultural activities.
Nonetheless, it has been emphasised that certain exemptions will apply. The Council said that in the protection of fundamental human rights, religious ceremonies, self-help groups, and political events of up to 50 persons are exempt from the certificate rule.
Moreover, it has been highlighted that those who fail to follow the rules set by the Swiss authorities risk a fine of €92 (CHF 100).
“Establishments and event organisers that do not comply with the certificate requirement may be fined or even closed down. The cantons are responsible for monitoring compliance,” the Council added.
Additionally, through the same press release, it has been announced that universities are allowed to introduce the certificate requirement as well. In case institutions decide to impose such a requirement, students will no longer be required to wear a mask, and there will be no restrictions regarding the classroom capacity.
Apart from the decision on the COVID-19 certificate, the Council also addressed the issue of certificates of those who have been vaccinated abroad. It was said that anyone who has been vaccinated with a vaccine approved by the European Medicines Agency (EMA) would be able to obtain a Swiss COVID Certificate.
Previously, it was reported that except for Switzerland, several EU countries have already made the COVID-19 Health Pass mandatory.
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