Zimbabwe plans e-passport switch
- Published on 21 August 2012
Zimbabwe plans to switch to electronic passports, with the country’s co-Home Affairs Minister, Theresa Makone, saying this could happen as soon as in the next three months.
The African nation is battling with a backlog of passport applications.
However, Makone says this burden could be eased following the introduction of ‘e-passports’, which look the same as normal passport documents, but have a small contactless computer chip embedded in the back cover and a digital photograph of the passport holder.
“We are moving to what we call the e-passport which is readable worldwide,” said Makone
“It follows international set standards and we should have the e-passport available to our citizens very soon, I would say in the next three to six months,” she added.
It costs $250 to process an emergency passport, which will be issued within three days according to officials. Meanwhile, an ordinary Zimbabwean passport application – processed within a sluggish period of up to three months – costs $50.