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Congo to hire consultants for legal frameworks of digitized identity, civil register

Congo to hire consultants for legal frameworks of digitized identity, civil register

The Republic of the Congo is on the hunt for consultants to review the country’s legal and regulatory framework for its civil register, identity services, certificate of nationality and criminal records, according to a notice. The review is part of the country’s Digital Transformation Acceleration Project for public administration and services, funded by the World Bank’s International Development Association.

The four-month project, based in Brazzaville, would analyze the current legal landscape for civil registry, in-person and digital ID, nationality and police records to determine any gaps and limitations and recommend improvements.

Their overall aim is to find ways to offer better access to these public services. Consultants would have to bear in mind the right to privacy, international norms and the digitization of the economy.

The request for expression of interest is open until 18 January.

The World Bank, through its International Bank for Reconstruction and Development, is funding the overall Congo Digital Acceleration Project to the tune of US$100 million. A flurry of other procurement notices have been published, seeking consulting firms to examine national competencies for digital technologies and to devise the “Vision Congo Digital 2030,” building on Vision Congo Digital 2025 to develop a digital economy.

German firm Mühlbauer launched its biometric tax ID card in Congo in 2020, which the firm claimed as a world-first. Fingerprints and iris biometrics are captured. Mühlbauer also provides Congo’s national ID cards and ePassports.

A study by ICT think-tank CIPESA details some of Congo Brazzaville’s privacy laws around biometrics and communications and notes that biometrics were collected before such protections were introduced. Biometric information can be accessed without the subject’s consent in issues of public interest.

The World Bank Group continues to fund digital identity and public service digitization worldwide. The Group’s IBRD is considering making US$250 million available to strengthen Indonesia’s civil registration and increase its use of biometric identification for service access.

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