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Rwanda’s project to issue passports with embedded biometric data has attained a new milestone in its implementation process following the country’s admission into the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) Public Key Directory (PKD).

Rwanda recently became the 75th country to join the ICAO PKD (public key directory), meaning it will now be faster and more effective to verify the identity of holders of the passport, for which issuance kicked off over a year and a half ago.

Rwanda’s directorate of immigration and emigration was cited as hailing the move and calling it “…the final stage of the e-passport implementation.”

The development is important because Rwanda’s membership of ICAO PKD will ensure that holders of biometric passports are cleared at receiving countries much quickly and smoothly.

It will also ensure that information found on the passport adheres to required technical stands, supports interoperability and enables prompt exchange of data between member countries, the report explains.

“For the border control of a receiving state to authenticate the e-passport of a foreign visitor, they must have certain information from the issuing state. The ICAO PKD provides an efficient means for a state to upload their own information and download that of other states,” the directorate statement added.

The Rwanda digital passport is an ID document designed with an electronic chip that stores biometric data. Once applied for, it is issued in less than four days.

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