Vaccine minister Nadhim Zahawi has said that the UK has “no plan of introducing a vaccine passport”, stating the technology would be “discriminatory”.

Speaking on the BBC’s Andrew Marr show, Zahawi also said that it wasn’t clear what impact such a move would have on the transmission of the virus.

When asked whether the UK government was looking at the idea of a vaccine passport, Zahawi replied:

“No we’re not, and there’s several reasons why we’re not doing that. One, vaccines are not mandated in this country, as Boris Johnson has quite rightly reminded Parliament – that’s not how we do things in the UK, we do them by consent.

“We yet don’t know what the impact of vaccines on transmission is, and it would be discriminatory. Of course you have the evidence that you’ve been vaccinated, held by your GP, and if other countries require you to show proof of that evidence that it obviously up to those countries.”

Last month the International Air Transport Association (IATA) urged the European Union to agree a common digital certificate for those who have been vaccinated against Covid-19.

The association is supporting an initiative by Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis for a harmonised vaccination certification, which would enable those who are vaccinated to travel freely within Europe without Covid-19 testing.

Several companies and international bodies have put forward a variety of technological solutions to document and verify travellers’ health status in the light of Covid-19 – for our guide to the different initiatives see:

Vaccine passports – a guide to the different options

And for our feature on the pros and cons of vaccine or so called “freedom” passports, see:

Vaccine passports – arguments for and against