From 2023, the new passport system will include biometric data.
Deputy Police Chief Ara Fidanyan stated in parliament on Tuesday that the Armenian government wants to extend the validity of old-style passports by a year, as he introduced changes to the legislation.
The first portion of the changes concerns the production of passports for boys before and after they reach the age of 16.
“They will be given passports for a period of 19 years rather than the current level of 18 years. After turning 19, they will be allowed to defer service in the military and undergo a medical examination,” Fidanyan added.
The Minister of Defense may grant a passport for an extended period to persons who have turned 18 years old if they are undergoing military service or other training (for studies, sports, treatment).
In the passport, under “place of birth,” instead of the country, the region, district, city, or village may be specified.
The objective of the adjustments is to extend the validity of old-style passports (not biometric) for another year, until December 31, 2022.
As a result, from 2023, a new system of passports will feature biometric data.
The Polish firm PWPW (Polish Paper Wartouśiowych), which created biometric Armenian passports and ID cards, is now printing documents for the Armenian police. Because of the coronavirus epidemic, her contract with the Armenian authorities expired in 2017, and a new bidding was put on hold until 2021 due to concerns about security. Documents will not be produced sooner than 2022.
The authorities expect to sign a contract with the new firm by 2021, and thus those citizens whose passports or ID-cards will expire within 2021 will have their documents extended until 2022. As a result, beginning in 2020, all persons who hold expired passports or identification cards would be able to renew them for another ten years. The administration says that it has already selected a winner.