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911.1M government ID documents to be shipped by 2018: Frost


New analysis from Frost & Sullivan has found that the unit shipment of government ID documents stood at 459.6 million in 2013 and is expected to reach 911.1 million by 2018. Many of these ID documents typically include biometric data.

The new research, Government ID: A Fragmented and Competitive Market, covers e-Passports, e-Health cards, eIDs, drivers’ licenses and other electronic documents. The new report is a part of Frost & Sullivan’s Smart Cards Growth Partnership Service program.

“International regulations for travelers and immigrants are shaping the e-ID document ecosystem,” Frost & Sullivan Information & Communication Technologies Global Programme Director, Jean-Noel Georges said. “One such regulation requires countries across Europe to ensure that the third generation of e-Passports is strongly encrypted and has new security features, such as supplemental access control, by December 2014.”

In addition, says the research organization, for international documents such as e-Passports, European countries must comply with the standards set by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO). National documents also need to correspond to global standards. As a result, some countries across Europe have started to issue documents similar to those available overseas such as the European Citizen Card.

Even though these standards and regulations are expanding the market for e-ID cards, it is difficult for new entrants to penetrate this mature space. The lack of competition is generating conflicts and lobbying among the major players to win national projects. Elections, parliamentary discussions, and industry pressure all directly affect these projects, pushing up costs. The varying requirements of countries, based on particular security needs, services and distinct objectives, cause further delays and cost escalations to e-ID projects.

“To minimize the impact of these challenges, market players should partner with local participants or at least have local representatives during national ID deployment,” Georges said. “They must also clearly define and deliver on client expectations to quickly gain acceptance among customers across Europe.”

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