Fraud-free passports for Filipinos

DUBAI - The release of the first fraud-free computerised Philippine passports following the implementation of the Machine Readable Passports and Visa (MRP/V) programme will place the Philippines on par with other countries which are currently issuing machine-readable passports to its nationals, said Libran Cabactulan, Philippine Ambassador to the UAE.

By Ramona Ruiz

  • Follow us on
  • google-news
  • whatsapp
  • telegram

Published: Sat 17 Jan 2004, 12:02 PM

Last updated: Thu 2 Apr 2015, 2:26 AM

He said that while the bidding for the project had been concluded, however, its implementation had been differed pending certain technical issues that had to be ironed out.

The MRP/V Project is a Built Operate and Transfer (BOT) project of the Philippine Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) under contract with BCA International Corporation and is intended to upgrade the Philippine passports in compliance with the "machine-readable" standards set by the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO).

The MPR/V system, which would also enable the DFA to build a passport data base to combat passport fraud, should have gone into effect in February 2002.

"However, its implementation is likely to take place this year, after the national elections in May. The introduction of the fraud-free passports means Filipinos would no longer have to be asked to step aside at airport counters of countries where machine-readable passports are required," Mr Cabactulan said.

The passport fee, he said, is expected to double. Passport fees in the Philippines cost 500 pesos and 750 pesos (for facilitated passports). To date, the Philippine Embassy in Abu Dhabi charges Dh200 for a 32-page passport. It used to cost Dh240 till the government reduced the fees to Dh200 on May 1, 2002 as a Labour Day gift.

Mr Cabactulan explained that the implementation will not involve the production of a large volume of booklets but the development of an infrastructure and inter-linkages of all posts.

The 10 passport offices in the country will all be linked in a single network. Biometrics and finger-printing will also be necessary in the implementation of the machine-readable passports.

More news from