The government will start distribution of electronic passports (e-passport) with 10 years’ validity from July 1 to ease the immigration process, Home Minister Asaduzzaman Khan said yesterday.
“We are working with a German firm to make the passports. Preparations to start e-passport distribution are almost complete. We hope we will be able to start handing those over from July 1,” he said, adding that while the entire passport producing process will take place in Bangladesh, although some passports would be printed in Germany initially.
He was talking to reporters after an iftar party of the Department of Immigration & Passports at Bangabandhu International Conference Center.
Replying to a query whether there is any scope to gain information from minister said allegations of information theft from the e-passport is “absurd”.
“We are doing everything carefully,” the minister added.
Last June, the Executive Committee of the National Economic Council (Ecnec) approved a project to introduce e-passports, which many countries of the world are using nowadays.
In July, the government signed an agreement with German firm Veridos GmbH to promote Bangladesh into the e-passport era, which was expected to begin in December the same year. However, the process saw some unexpected delays, according to passport office sources.
Around 120 countries have already introduced e-passports.
As per a planning ministry proposal, Bangladesh introduced MRP and machine-readable visa system on April 2010, in accordance with the International Civil Aviation Organisation guidelines.