Around 6.5 million passports have been issued in Pakistan this year for individuals planning to travel abroad, as revealed by Mustafa Jamal Qazi, the Director-General of Passports Pakistan. Qazi shared this information during his visit to the Karachi Passport Office, where he addressed officials on Thursday.
During the visit, Qazi emphasized that the issuance of e-passports would be mandatory starting in the year 2027. He assured that all necessary arrangements were in progress to facilitate this transition.
The Director-General stated that efforts were being made to shift from the current system of machine-readable passports to e-passports. He mentioned that a new system would be implemented within the next six to seven months, and from 2027 onwards, the usage of e-passports would be obligatory.
Addressing concerns, Qazi informed officials that a task force at the highest level was actively investigating the matter of 12,000 Pakistani passports allegedly issued to Afghan nationals. This indicates a commitment to addressing and resolving issues related to passport misuse.
Qazi also claimed that delays in passport issuance had been resolved. He attributed this improvement to the government’s procurement of an adequate quantity of lamination paper essential for printing new passports. With this development, the Director-General anticipated that the process of passport issuance would return to normal in the country.
The issuance of passports in Pakistan has seen a substantial number, reaching 6.5 million in the current year. The transition to e-passports is on the horizon, with plans to make it mandatory by 2027.
Additionally, efforts are underway to address concerns related to the alleged issuance of passports to Afghan nationals, showcasing a commitment to the security and efficiency of the passport system in the country.