August 12, 2015 -
The Sri Lankan government has begun the process of capturing the biometric fingerprint data of applicants when issuing passports, according to a report by News.LK.
The move comes more than a year after the Australian government announced it would provide 500 million Sri Lankan rupees (S$4.76 million) to fund the Sri Lankan passport project.
Earlier this week, the Immigration and Emigration Department begin issuing biometric passports that adhere to international standards.
Under this initiative, the Sri Lankan passport will become an internationally recognized travel document.
Immigration and Emigration Controller General Nihal Ranasinghe said that all passport applicants will be required to visit the head office of the department or regional offices where personnel will capture their fingerprints.
Ranasinghe added that all applicants should obtain their photographs in adherence to International Civil Aviation Organization standards, strictly from studios authorized by the Department located throughout the country or from studios established at the head office and regional offices of the department.
Any Sri Lankans living abroad should visit the head office or a regional office as soon as they return to Sri Lanka to submit their fingerprints.
Despite the issuance of new passports, any existing passports that are currently being used by Sri Lankans will not be cancelled, said Ranasinghe.