Dominica’s President, His Excellency Charles Savarin, followed by his wife, Clara Savarin, were the first to receive the new ePassport which was officially launched in Dominica on July 26, 2021.
The new passport which replaces the machine-readable one, contains both overt and covert security features that are woven into the design as well as a microchip that is used to authenticate the passport holder’s identity, adhering to the highest international standard.
The introduction of a polycarbonate data page positions Dominica new ePassports among the most secure passports around the world,” the company stated in a message during the official launch at the police headquarters.
Furthermore, Dominica is the first country within the OECS to issue this type of book.
The Announcement highlighted one of the benefits of the new passport – an electronic chip embedded in it which is equipped with biometric capabilities and facial recognition. With these advanced security features, it will become more difficult for this passport to be duplicated by criminal elements.
Other perks, according to the minister, include biodata pages which are resilient to water, the laser engravement as well as 50 pages as opposed to 32 pages which the current machine-readable passport contains.
He said there will be a two year period for the phasing out of the current passport to ensure that every citizen has enough time to apply for the new passport.
“We are perfectly aware that some of us may have just renewed our passport, and it is this consideration as well as ensuring that there is a smooth transition. That is why we’ve given the people a phase-out period within which you can apply for your new passport,” Minister explained. “So, therefore, everyone with a machine-readable passport will have a period from July 26 to the 30th of July 2023 within which you can apply for a new ePassport.”
For diasporans who wish to make the switch to the new passport, arrangements can be made with the various embassies or directly to the immigration department in Dominica, Blackmoore indicated.
For first-time diasporan applicants, the Minister revealed that workstations will be installed within three months at the various embassies and the major population centres namely New York, London and the Dubai catchment area to ensure that persons who wish to apply for this new passport can do so.