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Demonstrators hold flags and placards as they march to protest against the Covid-19 restrictions and the mandatory vaccination in Vienna, Austria, December 4 2021. Picture: LISI NIESNER/REUTERS
Demonstrators hold flags and placards as they march to protest against the Covid-19 restrictions and the mandatory vaccination in Vienna, Austria, December 4 2021. Picture: LISI NIESNER/REUTERS

Vienna — Austria’s planned coronavirus vaccine mandate includes fines of €3,600 and has a minimum age of 14, health minister Wolfgang Mueckstein told a news conference on Thursday.

The mandate is due to come into force in February, Mueckstein said, outlining details of the plan that must still be approved by parliament but which the government says has the backing of two opposition parties, suggesting it should pass easily.

The sanction for vaccination holdouts does not  include prison.  

 Mueckstein and the minister for constitutional affairs, Karoline Edtstadler, said earlier this week the specifics were subject to change in talks with experts and opposition parties.

Since conservative Chancellor Karl Nehammer took office on Monday, Mueckstein and Edstadler have repeated that there will be no jail terms for those who still refuse to get vaccinated even once this becomes compulsory in February.

 While some countries have introduced vaccine requirements for parts of their populations such as  health workers, Austria is the first EU member state to announce a general requirement. There will be exceptions for some categories of people like pregnant women, Edtstadler said. 

Other states moving to mandatory vaccination are:

GERMANY plans to pass legislation in the national parliament to make vaccination mandatory from February.

INDONESIA made inoculations mandatory in February, warning that anyone who refused to be vaccinated could be fined or denied social assistance or government services.

MICRONESIA, a small South Pacific island nation, mandated in July that its adult population be inoculated.

TAJIKISTAN made coronavirus vaccination mandatory for citizens above 18 years in July.

TURKMENISTAN has made vaccination mandatory for all residents aged 18 and over.

Government employees, public and private sector workers

CANADA expanded Covid-19 mandates on December 7 to all federally regulated workplaces. The new regulations would come into effect in early 2022.

COSTA RICA in September mandated all state workers to be vaccinated.

CROATIA requires from November 15 a digital vaccination certificate from all public sector employees and citizens who need services in public institutions.

CZECH REPUBLIC announced on December 6 it will order Covid-19 vaccinations for police officers, soldiers and some other professions from March.

DENMARK passed a bill allowing workplaces from November 26 to require a digital “corona pass” for employees.

EGYPT mandated public sector employees to either be vaccinated or take a weekly coronavirus test to be allowed to work in government buildings after November 15.

FIJI introduced a “no jab, no job” policy in August, with unvaccinated public servants forced to go on leave and subsequently dismissed if still unvaccinated by November. Employees at private firms could also face fines and companies could be forced to stop operations over vaccine refusals.

GHANA will make the vaccine mandatory for targeted groups including all public sector and health workers from January 22.

HUNGARY said in October it would require employees at state institutions to be vaccinated. It had already made Covid-19 shots mandatory for healthcare workers.

ITALY made Covid-19 health passes mandatory for all workers in October. The government extended mandatory vaccination to all school staff, police and the military, beginning from December 15.

LATVIA on November 12 banned lawmakers who refuse Covid-19 vaccine from voting and docked their pay. On November 4 it allowed businesses to fire workers who refuse to either get a vaccine or transfer to remote work.

LEBANON will require mandatory vaccination for all civil servants and workers in the education, tourism and public transport sectors as of January 10.

NEW ZEALAND mandated vaccines for workers of border, education, prison, police and defence force sectors.

POLAND will require mandatory vaccination for teachers, security personnel and uniformed services from March 1, 2022.

RUSSIA's capital Moscow ordered all workers with public-facing roles to be vaccinated, while St. Petersburg on November 9 ordered mandatory vaccination for people over 60 and those with chronic illnesses.

SAUDI ARABIA in May mandated that all public and private sector workers wishing to attend a workplace get vaccinated. People must also be vaccinated to enter any government, private, or educational establishment.

TUNISIA in October mandated officials, employees and visitors to show a card proving inoculation to access public and private administrations. 

TURKEY began demanding negative Covid-19 tests and proof of vaccination for some sectors in August, including teachers and domestic travel employees.

UKRAINE in October made vaccinations compulsory for public sector employees including teachers. The unvaccinated face restrictions on access to restaurants, sports and other public events. On November 11, it proposed expanding the list of occupations for compulsory Covid-19 vaccinations to cover medical personnel and municipal employees.

US President Joe Biden on September 10 ordered all federal workers and contractors to be vaccinated. A mandate that private sector workers be vaccinated or tested weekly will be enforced from January 4. Biden's executive order requiring new contractors to have employees fully vaccinated by Jan. 18 was blacked by a federal judge on December 7.


AUSTRALIA in late June made vaccinations mandatory for high-risk aged-care workers and employees in quarantine hotels.

BRITAIN in October made it mandatory for care home staff in England to be vaccinated. Health workers in England will have to be inoculated by April 1.

CROATIA requires a digital vaccination certificate for all health and social care workers.

CZECH REPUBLIC announced on December 6 it will order Covid-19 vaccinations for people working in hospitals and nursing homes from March.

FINLAND plans to make Covid-19 vaccines mandatory for health and social care workers.

FRANCE required all healthcare and care home workers, home aids and urgent care technicians to have had at least their first shot by September 15; about 3,000 workers were suspended for failing to comply. It has postponed implementing a vaccination mandate for health workers in Martinique and Guadeloupe islands to December 31 after protests.

GERMANY is planning to make Covid-19 vaccinations mandatory from March 16 for people working in hospitals, nursing homes and other medical practices.

GREECE made vaccinations mandatory for nursing home staff in July and healthcare workers in September.

LEBANON will require mandatory vaccination for all workers in the health sectors as of January 10.

NEW ZEALAND said in October it would require teachers and workers in the health and disability sectors to be fully vaccinated.

POLAND will require mandatory vaccination for healthcare workers from March 1, 2022. With TimesLIVE



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