Pakistani Expats Can Now Renew their Passports at 50% Fees

Pakistani expatriates in the UAE will not have to pay hefty fees to renew their passports anymore as their government has cut down the charges by 50 per cent.

Pakistan missions in the UAE and elsewhere in the world have started issuing passports on a reduced fees from March this year. Pakistan government had announced to reduce the passport fees in February this year to facilitate the people especially the blue collar workers.

Online applications urged

The official also urged Pakistanis living in the UAE to use the online portal to renew their ID cards and passports as it will help reduce the rush at the missions. More than 800 people visit the missions daily to renew their passports. UAE is home to more than 1.6 million Pakistanis.

According to the new directives of the Directorate General of Immigration and Passports in Pakistan, a passport issued for five years with a total number of 36 pages will now cost D85 instead of Dh150 while the fee for the urgent passport will be Dh140 instead of Dh250. The regular fee for the 100-page passport has been reduced from Dh300 to Dh170 while the urgent delivery fee has been reduced from Dh600 to Dh335.

The new fees list for Pakistani passports.Image Credit: Supplied

A 36-page passport with a 10-year validity will cost Dh125 instead of Dh270 while the fee for the urgent 10-year passport has been reduced from Dh450 to Dh210. A 100-page passport with 10-year validity will cost Dh250 instead of Dh540 while the free for the urgent passport of same category has been reduced from Dh1,080 to Dh500.

While the new fees of the passport renewals have been updated on the Pakistan Embassy website, that of the Pakistan Consulate in Dubai still reflects old rates and have not been updated yet. According to the Pakistan Embassy website, the issuance time for the regular passport is 25 days while urgent passport renewal time is 15 days.

E-passport scheme

Meanwhile, Pakistan has recently announced to launch e-passports by June this year and a German company has been awarded the contract to facilitate the system. “This [e-passport] service would be available by June,” Sheikh Rashid Ahmed, Federal Interior Minister of Pakistan announce recently. He confirmed that a German company has been hired to introduce the electronic passport system in the country. The interior minister described it as a key development that would help eradicate all the hurdles in the current manual system and assist Pakistanis living abroad process online applications conveniently.

Biometric documents will speed up the identification process, simplifying passport control and paving the way for automation of services. The new e-passports will have a biometric chip containing personal data such as photograph, fingerprints and other information.

Contactless microprocessor

The e-passport has a contactless microprocessor that stores the same information that is printed on the passport’s data page such as the holder’s name, date of birth, passport number, photograph as well as fingerprints, and signatures. The electronic passport adds a special layer of security to the traditional travel document and reduces the risk of fraud.

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