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24.05.2019 General News

Increasing Cost Of Passport Realistic—Minister

Hon Ayorkor BotchweyHon Ayorkor Botchwey

The sector minister says the reviewing the cost of its highly subsidised national passport acquisition upward is realistic to help reduce costs absorbed by the state.

Ms Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration Minister, made this when she addressed the press in Accra on Wednesday this week.

According to her, Ghana's cost recovery for passport processing was one of the lowest in the sub-region, but government is incurring debts as the result of the subsidy.

The Minister said government through the Ministry is on negotiation table to conclude on how much more fee to be added stressing that currently, Ghana passport is the less expensive in Africa continent.

Ms Ayorkor who is also the Member of Parliament for Anya/Sowutuom explained that the would-be increased passport cost is basically to provide good and better services but not to make profit.

She maintained that the cost of acquiring the national passport outside the country would remain subsided as the cost outside is already higher than the current cost in the country.

The cost of acquiring a passport application is GH¢100.00 for express while the normal or standard application is GH¢50.00.

Ms Botchwey added that plans are far advance to reduce the frequency at which prospective applicants frequent the passport office for renewal and that measures are being taken to extend the validity from five years to 10 years.

She explained that the passport office has started issuing the 10 years validity passport since last month and holders of the Ghanaian passport would go for renewal after 10 years.

The Minister also announced that offices have been secured in Central, Upper East and Upper West Regions for opening of passport application centres.

She assured Ghanaians of the government determination to make traveling documents transparent and convenient to acquire.