UK's Sunak says vaccine passport idea might help the economy

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Rishi Sunak (REUTERS)Rishi Sunak (REUTERS) 1 min read . Updated: 28 Feb 2021, 04:29 PM IST Reuters

Prime Minister Boris Johnson said last week that the government would hold a review to consider the scientific, moral, philosophical and ethical questions about using vaccine certificates for people who have received a coronavirus shot

British finance minister Rishi Sunak said the idea of giving people vaccine passports or certificates to allow them to enter venues or events might be a way to help the country and its economy recover from the coronavirus pandemic.

"Obviously it is a complicated but potentially very relevant question for helping us reopen those parts of our country like mass events," Sunak told BBC television on Sunday.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson said last week that the government would hold a review to consider the scientific, moral, philosophical and ethical questions about using vaccine certificates for people who have received a coronavirus shot, which could help entertainment and hospitality venues reopen.

Public finances won't be fixed overnight

Sunak also said he would not try to fix the public finances overnight, days before he presents a budget statement that is expected to include further heavy borrowing to steer the economy through the COVID-19 crisis.

"Look, this is not something that's going to happen overnight. Given the scale of the shock we've experienced, the scale of the damage, this is going to take time to fix," he told Sky News.

"It's important ...to also have strong public finances over time".

Sunak declined to comment on specific tax rises he might have in mind before delivering the budget to parliament on Wednesday.

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