2 February 2018

Tanzania: Hi-Tech Passport Will Spur Trade

Photo: East African Legislative Assembly
Member states and and East African Legislative Assembly flags.

Tanzania's move to roll out a high tech passport is a huge step towards boosting trade both at the regional and international levels.

President John Magufuli officially commissioned the new travel document on Wednesday.

The business community has welcomed the new generation passports for their multiple benefits, including easing travel for Tanzanians. More important, the move is part of an ambitious regional plan to ease travel for East African residents.

Tanzania now joins Burundi, Kenya and Rwanda in rolling out the electronic passport. Last year, the issuance of the East African Community (EAC) electronic passport was pushed January this year, to give Tanzania and Uganda more time to prepare for the rollout.

One of the major hurdles that have been repeatedly cited as a stumbling block to boosting trade and regional integration is the difficulty of travelling across countries - hampering the movement of goods and services.

For the economies of East African Community member states to grow, there is need to ensure the free flow of goods and labour from one country to another.

Therefore, eradicating trade barriers is the only way that the EAC member states can help foster business in the region.

The good news is that the electronic passport has been touted as a great step in easing clearance at entry points. It will also curb counterfeit travel documents and tampering, as well as hastening the free flow of goods from one point to another

This is a big step in efforts to attract investment.

According to the Immigration Department, the current passports in use will be phased out by January 2020.

The passports will feature a microchip containing details of the owner and will allow information contained in it to be verified against information displayed in the passport.

We urge the regional governments to keep working on the removal of other barriers to trade to spur growth.

More on This

Tanzania Rolls Out Electronic Passports

Tanzania has rolled out the new electronic East African Community passports to replace the existing national documents,… Read more »

See What Everyone is Watching

Copyright © 2018 The Citizen. All rights reserved. Distributed by AllAfrica Global Media (allAfrica.com). To contact the copyright holder directly for corrections — or for permission to republish or make other authorized use of this material, click here.

AllAfrica publishes around 800 reports a day from more than 140 news organizations and over 500 other institutions and individuals, representing a diversity of positions on every topic. We publish news and views ranging from vigorous opponents of governments to government publications and spokespersons. Publishers named above each report are responsible for their own content, which AllAfrica does not have the legal right to edit or correct.

Articles and commentaries that identify allAfrica.com as the publisher are produced or commissioned by AllAfrica. To address comments or complaints, please Contact us.