Latvian passports to look different and cost twice as much

As of February next year, it is planned to issue a new type of passports in Latvia, and the fees for issuance of passports will also increase substantially, according to amendments to Cabinet of Ministers regulations prepared by the Ministry of the Interior December 18.

The Office of Citizenship and Migration Affairs (PMLP) began issuing the existing model passport in 2015. As protection against counterfeiting decreases during the use of identity documents, to mitigate the risks associated with the use of forged documents, the model of identity documents should be periodically improved by changing design and introducing new anti-counterfeiting measures, the PMLP said.

The new passport samples will include “innovative anti-counterfeiting solutions”. The new model's passports will also be thicker, increasing the number of pages from 34 to 42, though why more paper pages are required in the digitally enhanced documents was not immediately clear.

State fees for issuing passports were last set in 2012. Since then, the costs of several of the positions constituting the State fee have almost doubled, according to PMLP. The amendments provide that the State fee for issuing a passport to an adult will be EUR 60 instead of EUR 30, for children and persons with different kinds of reliefs – EUR 30 instead of EUR 15. 

The PMLP said that the date of implementation of the changes may still be adjusted.

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