Slow-going for Belarus’ digital ID document campaign
Dictator-run Belarus, in Eastern Europe, says it has issued 165,000 biometric IDs to citizens and 58,000 to foreign residents. Especially for a strong-man government and a highly centralized economy, it is not particularly rapid progress.
Two percent of the nation’s population now has a digital ID, according to the state-owned Belta news service. Foreigners in the nation must have biometric residence permits, while it is optional for citizens to have a biometric ID.
The government has issued 135,000 biometric passports, as well.
Among former states in the Soviet Union, Belarus is considered one of the most authoritarian and has one of the voluntarily closest relationships with Russia.
It was only last fall that the Belarus House of Representatives gave an initial approval to a law what would set rules for issuing the passports. The program was headed by digital ID vendor Emperor Technology and assisted by digital ID document vendor X Infotech.