The roadmap, presented by the President of the European Commission and the President of the European Council answers calls to prepare ‘measures necessary to get Europe’s societies and economies back to a normal functioning and to sustainable growth, integrating inter alia the green transition and the digital transformation, and drawing all lessons from the crisis’.

The roadmap highlights three criteria relevant to the assessment on when to begin to relax confinement measures:

  • Epidemiological criteria
  • Sufficient health system capacity
  • Appropriate monitoring capacity

Alongside these criteria, the roadmap sets out three basic principles that should be used to guide the EU and its member states:

  • Action should be based on science and have public health at its centre
  • Action should be coordinated between the Member States
  • Respect and solidarity between Member States remains essential

The plan also calls for the need to gather data and develop a robust reporting system, create a contact tracing framework (respecting data privacy), and an expansion of testing capacity. There would also be a need for increased capacity and resilience of health care systems, together with increases provision of personal protective equipment (PPE).

The report recommends gradual action, with general measures progressively replaced by targeted ones, while the more vulnerable groups should be protected for longer. Containment measures should be lifted locally and then gradually extended to a broader geographic coverage.

Internal and external boarder restrictions should be lifted in a coordinated fashion, with access to non-EU residents reopened in a second stage. Similarly, there should be a phased re-start of economic activity.

A European roadmap to lifting coronavirus containment measures