The European Parliament and member states have reached agreement in principle on a digital Covid certificate that should open up summer travel across the European Union.

The deal should allow people to travel across the EU from the end of June, with the help of a certificate that will indicate if a person has been vaccinated, has a negative Covid test, or has recovered from the virus.

The certificate will be available in paper or digital form and will reflect the national Covid certificates which each member state will develop.

Ursula von der Leyen, the president of the European Commission, said: "We are delivering on our commitment to have the EU Digital Covid Certificate up and running before the summer.

"European citizens are looking forward to travelling again, and today's agreement means they will be able to do so safely very soon."

The Commission said that the certificate will be "free of charge, secure and accessible to all" and "fully respects citizens’ fundamental rights, including protection of personal data".

The EU Digital Covid Certificate, formerly referred to as the Digital Green Pass, has been the subject of intense negotiation between MEPs and member states, with the European Parliament pushing for the fewest national restrictions possible, but member states arguing for the need for national governments to control the entry of travellers where necessary.

The European Parliament has said that Covid tests, which people can register on their certificates, should be affordable and accessible.

A statement said €100 million would be made available from a Covid Emergency Support instrument set up by the European Commission.

"The certificate will be available in either digital or paper format. It will attest that a person has been vaccinated against coronavirus or has a recent negative test result or has recovered from the infection.

"In practice, these will be three distinct certificates. A common EU framework will allow member states to issue certificates that will then be accepted in other EU countries."

The parliament said the certificate would not be a "precondition" to exercise the right to free movement and would not be considered a travel document.

The parliament urged member states not to impose additional travel restrictions such as quarantine, self-isolation or testing "unless they are necessary and proportionate to safeguard public health".

EU member states have been negotiating the certificate for several months, since it was proposed by the European Commission.

Countries with heavy dependence on the tourism industry, such as Greece, Italy and Spain, have pressed hardest to have a certificate agreed quickly.

Read more: Latest coronavirus stories

Tánaiste Leo Varadkar earlier said that once the certificate is agreed, there would be a legal obligation on the governments of member states to provide it to citizens.

"But each state will have a lot of flexibility on how they use it," he said.

"So we would only consider using it for international travel for example. Some may require full vaccination and a test, some may say it can be either or, so there will be a lot of flexibility to maintain their own restrictions."