Sun, Sep 16, 2007 - Page 2 News List

MOFA to change pricing mechanism for new passports

MONEY MATTERS A ministry spokesman said that a new charging system would come into operation for electronic passports next year

STAFF WRITER , WITH CNA

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs will charge different application fees according to the period of validity for new electronic passports scheduled to be launched next year, a ministry official said.

Ministry spokesman David Wang (王建業) made the announcement on Friday in response to a Consumers' Foundation request made earlier in the week.

applications

The foundation said that the ministry charges NT$1,200 for passport applications, regardless of the passports' different lengths of validity.

An ordinary passport is valid for 10 years, passports for children less than 14 years of age are valid for five years and passports for individuals eligible for military service are valid for three years.

The foundation said the ministry should look to South Korea, Hong Kong and Japan to study other graduated systems of passport application fees.

fee

Wang said the NT$1,200 fee is mainly for production costs, which remain constant regardless of the period of validity.

He said the ministry's Bureau of Consular Affairs would nevertheless adopt a new charging system next year for the electronic passport.

The electronic passport, also known as ePassport, differs from the existing one as it has an embedded identification chip containing biometric indicators to authenticate the identity of travelers, Wang said.

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