Maldives has started rolling out its new ePassport to its citizens. The first ePassport was issued to the President of Maldives, His Excellency Maumoon Abdul Gayoom at a ceremony held on the Independence Day of Maldives, 26 July. The new passport follows a completely new design, and features the passport holder’s facial and fingerprint information as biometric identifiers.
Despite the introduction of a new generation of passports, passports issued on or before 25 July can be used until their expiry, and it is not compulsory for anyone to switch to the new passport.
The new passport will be printed by Austrian State Printing House, Osterreichische Staatsdruckerei, with IRIS Corporation of Malaysia supplying the inlays for the microchip that will be embedded on the back cover of all electronic passports.
A 32-page Ordinary passport will cost Rf350, while a 64-page Ordinary passport will cost Rf600. Children under the age of 10 years and people applying for passports through diplomatic missions abroad will be issued with a 32-page non-electronic Ordinary passport, which will cost Rf250.
Maldives is the first South Asian country to issue ICAO compliant ePassports.