Taiwan to launch 'more identifiable' passport on Monday: MOFA

01/07/2021 07:13 PM
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The current version of the passport (left) and new version (right). CNA photo Sep. 2, 2020
The current version of the passport (left) and new version (right). CNA photo Sep. 2, 2020

Taipei, Jan. 7 (CNA) Next week Taiwan will launch a newly designed passport, with the word "Taiwan" printed in larger lettering and placed in a more prominent position, to increase its identifiability, an official at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) announced Thursday.

Taiwan will start issuing passports with the new cover design on Jan. 11, MOFA's Bureau of Consular Affairs Director-General Phoebe Yeh (葉非比) said during a regular press briefing.

The new cover design was first unveiled by Foreign Minister Joseph Wu (吳釗燮) on Sept. 2, 2020 and seeks to draw a clearer distinction between Taiwan and China.

Taiwan, the formal designation of which is the Republic of China, is sometimes confused as the People's Republic of China by some people.

Based on the sample passport presented by Yeh, the newly designed cover significantly reduces the size of the words "Republic of China" and re-positions them inside a thin outer circle that surrounds the national emblem.

On the other hand, the word "Taiwan" is magnified and printed in a bold font, based on the sample passport.

Yeh said the launch for the newly designed passport is all set and her office has inspected a reserve of 500,000 copies.

MOFA has instructed Taiwan's embassies and representative offices abroad to notify the International Air Transport Association (IATA), different airline companies and relevant government agencies in their host countries of the changes to the passport cover.

Limited offers of small gifts, with the choice of a luggage tag or a set of spring couplets, will be given to lucky passport applicants on Jan. 11 at the Bureau of Consular Affairs head office and four satellite offices outside Taipei, she said.

The luggage tag and spring couplets. CNA photo Jan. 7, 2021
The luggage tag and spring couplets. CNA photo Jan. 7, 2021

The application fee for the newly designed passport will remain NT$1,300 (US$45.51) for adults and NT$900 for children below 14 years old, she said.

Old passports can still be used until their expiration date, she added.

(By Chen Yun-yu and Emerson Lim)

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