South Korean Prime Minister Chung Sye-kyun announced on Tuesday, March 30, that the government will be rolling out a smartphone application by the end of April that will show a person's vaccination status.
"The introduction of a vaccine passport or 'green pass' will only allow those who have been vaccinated to experience the recovery to their daily lives," said Chung during an interagency meeting regarding the government's response to the coronavirus.
According to Chung, the vaccine passport app has already been developed. It will use blockchain technology to protect individuals from potential identity theft. (Related: COVID FASCISM: Biden administration plotting with corporations to push coronavirus vaccine passports that will discriminate against those with innate, functioning immune systems.)
Around 850,000 people in South Korea have received at least one dose of the coronavirus vaccine since the country's mass inoculation campaign began in late February. The country has planned to fully vaccinate 12 million people by the end of June and to achieve herd immunity by November.
On Thursday, April 1, South Korea expanded its vaccine rollout by beginning vaccinations for people aged 75 and older. People who signed up for the vaccine rollout will receive the one developed by Pfizer and BioNTech.
Vaccine hesitancy among Koreans is low, with more than 86 percent of the 3.5 million people eligible to receive the vaccine stating that they plan to take the shot.
KT, South Korea's largest telecommunications corporation, announced on Thursday that it will be developing a coronavirus passport for South Koreans who want to travel abroad.
This vaccine passport, known as a "digital health passport," is being developed along with other coronavirus-related tech services in cooperation with the Incheon International Airport Corporation and Inha University Hospital.
According to KT, anyone who wants to travel abroad will visit a designated hospital to receive a coronavirus test. If they get a negative test result, they will be cleared for departure. Their test result will also be uploaded to a smartphone app that will issue the digital health passport for use at Incheon International as well as in any other airport.
KT said this smartphone app will also be able to carry other electronic documents needed for entry into certain countries for the added convenience of the user.
The telco company hopes that its digital health passport can sync up with all the other vaccine passport systems being developed in South Korea. It is also currently working with international airports to get the digital passport accepted.
South Korea will join other nations issuing coronavirus vaccine passports to fully immunized citizens. The government's goal is to promote cross-border travel while keeping infection risks under control, reviving the ailing tourism industry in the process.
Many countries around the world have already adopted their own versions of a coronavirus vaccine passport. China has already started issuing vaccination certificates while the European Union is planning to implement a digital vaccine passport that EU residents can use when crossing international borders.
Meanwhile, the Group of Seven (G7) has called for creating a standardized vaccine passport system that can be used in any country in the world. G7 is an intergovernmental organization made up of Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom and the United States.
Learn more about vaccine passports and the dangers associated with requiring them by reading the latest articles at Pandemic.news.