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Prime Minister says new E-passports valid for 10 years rather than five

Posted: Friday, April 14, 2023. 9:06 am CST.

By Zoila Palma Gonzalez: On April 1, 2023, the Minister of Immigration, Eamon Courtenay signed into law the new passport fees.

Late last year, Belize began using the new EPICS system.

Тhе nеw fее fоr thе аdult ѕtаndаrd 10-уеаr раѕѕроrt saw an increase from $50 to $200.

Prime Minister John Briceño says that the new system is a huge investment and added that the E-passports are also now valid for 10 years instead of 5.

“It is a very big, it’s a huge investment that we did and we ensured now that these passports can store your biometrics. They have a microchip in it. And as you all know, there’s been a shortage of microchips. So it delayed the implementation of these new passports,” Briceño said during an interview with 7News Belize.

“And so what the minister did is says, okay, now we are going to move the passport from five years to 10 years. So in effect, your passport, it’s costing you $20 per year,” he added.

In addition, the Prime Minister says that the new Belize passports are accepted worldwide.

“One of the problems we are having with the, with the, the European Union, is that they require us to, to, um, to get a visa from them. And one of the reasons why they’re saying that is because they did not trust the passport, how secure, how safe it is. Now that we have this new system, they say, okay, now we’re taking a, another look. And hopefully, in the near future they may say, okay, we, we are going to do a visa waivers for, for Belizeans,” he explained.


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