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NATO-funded printers help MoI to process 1,000 passports daily

KABUL: The Central Passport Department operating within the framework of the Ministry of Interior (MoI), has received new passport printers, purchased by NATO-led Resolute Support (RS) mission.

The purchase of the new printers comes as the number of applicants acquiring passports has been on the rise with the Central Passport Department personnel working in two shifts to respond to the demands of the Afghan citizens.

“NATO has purchased passport printers for the Afghan Ministry of Interior (MoI). Each day, thousands of Afghan citizens visit the office in ‪Kabul to obtain a new passport,” according to an online statement by Resolute Support (RS) mission.

The statement further added that the new passport machines, the MoI will process the passport applications faster. Before the new passport machines, each passport had to be hand signed.

Additionally, old passports were easily forged, RS said, adding that the new passport machine will shorten prep time for passports and visas for companies that want to do business in Afghanistan. According to the MoI, 700-1,000 passports can be processed daily.

Meanwhile, the Afghan government is launching online enrollment for electronic passport in a bid to expedite the process for the applicants.

The Ministry of Communications and Information Technology of Afghanistan (MICT) earlier announced that a plan has been prepared for the online enrollment and distribution of passports through Afghan Post.

The Afghan government launched distribution of electronic passports in early 2013 by obtaining the biometric data of the applicant that can be used to identify the holder. The new system has made it harder for criminals and insurgents to travel.

The launch of online enrollment for the electronic passports has been widely welcomed with Chief Executive Officer Abdullah Abdullah saying the launch of the system is yet another step to fight corruption.

Each day, thousands of Afghan citizens visit the office in ‪Kabul to obtain a new passport. With the new passport machines, the MoI will process the passport applications faster.

Before the new passport machines, each passport had to be hand signed. Additionally, old passports were easily forged.

The new passport machine will shorten prep time for passports and visas for companies that want to do business in Afghanistan.

According to the MoI, 700-1,000 passports can be processed daily.—(Khaama Press)

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