The European Commission (EC) presented guidelines1 to the EU member states on management of borders in the context of the COVID-19 emergency. The EC President Ursula von der Leyen stressed it is important that the EU member states coordinate their efforts to prevent the spread of COVID-19 and help ensure the continued movement of people and free circulations of goods in the EU market. The guidelines pertain to entry screenings, health screenings, quarantine, border crossings, freight transport, etc.
The European Commission (EC) presented guidelines1 to the EU member states on management of borders in the context of the COVID-19 emergency. The EC President Ursula von der Leyen stressed it is important that the EU member states coordinate their efforts to prevent the spread of COVID-19 and help ensure the continued movement of people and free circulations of goods in the EU market.
The guidelines’ objective is to protect the health of people, but it is not to stop free movement within the EU in order to achieve that objective. The EU member states should facilitate the safe crossing of frontier workers and not disrupt supply chains, especially the free circulation of essential goods, such as food, livestock, and vital medical and protective equipment and supplies.
The EC recommended postponing or canceling all non-essential travels in the EU, for example leisure trips, non-urgent business meetings, and similar. While acting to protect public health and safety during the COVID-19 pandemic, EU member states still need to preserve the integrity of the internal market.
Many member states have already (re)introduced internal border controls which prolong travel time for people crossing the EU’s internal borders. The guidelines reflect the measures already imposed by some countries and if you or your employees are crossing the border, the guidelines can prepare you for what you can expect at a border control.
You should follow all recommended and imposed national guidelines in order to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. It is important that you take the necessary measures to protect yourself and those people in your general vicinity when you cross borders.
You can anticipate longer travel times and delays when you cross EU borders. The overview of the EU Commission’s guidelines can provide information about what you can expect and how to prepare yourself so that the border crossings proceed as smoothly and quickly as possible.
1 For the full guidelines (PDF 67 KB).
Please note the KPMG International member firm in the United States does not provide immigration or labour law services. However, KPMG Law LLP in Canada can assist clients with U.S. immigration matters.
The information contained in this newsletter was submitted by the KPMG International member firm in The Netherlands.
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