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Getting a new passport is set to cost you more, depending on the kind of passport you are looking for.
Starting 9 October 2017, charges and fees for immigration services will increase. The plan was confirmed by the Chief Executive Officer of the Ministry of Prime Minister and Cabinet, Agafili Shem Leo, during a press conference.
“The last review of the fees and charges was back in 2007 which is ten years ago exactly,” he said.
“In 2012, one of the major changes into the features of our passport is that it is now being recognised internationally because it is now compliant with the requirement of the International Civil Aviation Organization or the ICAO Standards."
“The ICAO International standards are something all passports are required to meet. Since 2012 the Samoan passport has been recognised internationally in terms of its compliance with the ICAO Standards."
“And through that the government has been bearing the cost of those changes in the security features."
“Through the ICAO Standards we are now able to safely say that the passport is fully secured that we are able to travel freely to all countries using our passports."
“It now makes a lot easier for the public to travel outside of the country and into Samoa using our passport.”
Agafili added that the new charges are in line with government policy.
“It’s a government policy to look at the fees regularly and to review them from time to time given the circumstances,” he said.
“We also have to consider charges from those who are actually producing the passports overseas for Samoa."
“I also want to emphasise that the Samoan passport validity is 10 years and over the last 10 years its only $50 in terms of the changing and the fee so if people are responsible and safe keeping their travel document they don’t have to pay a fee of they had lost it or they had damaged it."
“The penalty for a person who intentionally damaged their passport is not more than 3 years imprisonment term.
SOURCE: SAMOA OBSERVER/PACNEWS
Pacific Islands News Association
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