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MOFA to introduce next-generation e-Passport

December 18, 2017

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs today announced that next-generation e-Passports will be issued starting December 25.

Citizens may begin applying for such passports on that date at the Ministry’s Bureau of Consular Affairs or its branch offices in Taichung, Kaohsiung, Hualian, and Chiayi, as well as missions abroad. The cost of a new passport will not be affected by the change, which brings greater security and convenience for passport-holders.

Since the introduction of e-Passports on December 29, 2008, some 166 countries, including European Union states, as well as the United States, Great Britain, and Canada, have granted ROC passport-holders visa-free entry, landing visa, or related entry privileges. However, this has also made our passports the target of criminal organizations. Also, ID security technology develops rapidly. To keep pace with global trends, and to prevent identity theft, next-generation e-Passports are thus being introduced.

Next-generation e-Passports feature the best in internationally used security measures. For example, they include a third image of the passport-holder and a metallic surface relief, upgrading their security functions. The inner pages show background images of landmarks and cultural customs, all symbolic of a dynamic Taiwan.

The application fee for the next-generation e-Passport will remain NT$1,300 for adults and NT$900 for children. The application procedure will also remain unchanged. Previous versions of e-Passports and machine-readable passports will remain valid until their expiry date. However, passport-holders may apply for a new, next-generation passport prior to the expiration of their current one.

The issuance of next-generation e-Passports means improved passport security; it will also increase the international community’s trust of ROC-issued identity documents, useful as the government continues to strive for better visa treatment for our citizens as part of its overall commitment to serving the people. (E)