The first ever e-passport with Serial Number EA0000001 has been issued last Tuesday , August 11, 2009 to none other than President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo.

The electronic passport or ‘e-Passport’ , is currently being used in over 60 countries. This is very much different from the maroon-colored machine readable passports that are currently being issued by the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA).

The security features off this new passport includes a hidden encoded image, an ultra-thin holographic laminate, and a tamper-proof electronic microchip that stores the passport holder’s photograph and other personal data for easy verification of identity and is fully inter-operable.

Initially, application for the ePassport, which costs 950 pesos will be on appointment basis. Full implementation of the project will take place in the next three months.

However , Filipino passport applicants may still choose between the ePassport and the machine-readable passport (MRP).  Holders of the green (regular) passports need not worry as the DFA had asked the international community to still honor them until their expiration dates.

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