As the leading international agency in setting travel document Standards and Recommended Practices (SARPs), ICAO works with Member States and international organizations in addressing capacity gaps in Machine Readable Travel Documents (MRTDs) and identification management programmes. The ICAO Secretariat, working with the Implementation and Capacity Building Working Group (ICBWG) of the Technical Advisory Group on MRTDs, has taken proactive steps to engage States in need of assistance, the assistance community, and other international agencies in tackling identification management and border control challenges in a concerted and cooperative manner.
ICAO plays an important role in the provision of capacity-building assistance to Member States in order to address specific needs and help States resolve security-related deficiencies and strengthen their overall security systems. States that have not yet implemented the latest MRTD-related Standards present a vulnerability to global security that may compromise travel document and border security regimes. Resolving capacity deficiencies requires a dialogue among States, intensified liaison with donor agencies, and increased access to capacity-building programmes.
In recent years, requests for machine readable passport technical assistance have increased considerably. The Secretariat continues to provide such assistance to States, with particular focus on ensuring universal compliance with Standards 3.10 and 3.10.1 of Annex 9 — Facilitation. ICAO has been consolidating its working partnerships with other UN agencies and international organizations, and the donor community, in order to explore more effective ways to provide expertise and assistance to Member States on travel document compliance, enhancement of secure document issuance, and effective document use in border controls.
The Secretariat, in coordination with the ICBWG, has provided assistance to over 70 Member States and international organizations on matters related to MRTDs, ranging from clarifying MRTD specifications and interpreting requirements, to full-scale assessment, consultation and training sessions. In order to ensure the quality and ICAO-compliance of their new passports and ePassports, States increasingly rely on technical assistance from ICAO in developing tender specifications and carrying out a tender for the implementation of new MRTDs.
To discuss your MRTD assistance needs and future technical cooperation options, contact the nearest ICAO Regional Office or the MRTD Programme at ICAO Headquarters in Montréal: firstname.lastname@example.org.