Almost 1.19 million passport requests were filled with Romanian authorities last year, a 24% increase year-on-year and a 42% increase compared to 2010, according to data from the Romanian Interior Affairs Ministry (MAI). The number covers both regular electronic passports and temporary ones.
The growth trend is visible in the first months of the year as well. Romanian authorities received 221,359 passport requests in January and February of this year, compared to 181,300 in the first two months of 2016.
The number of requests for a passport peaks in summer when many Romanians go abroad to spend their holidays. While Romanians can travel to EU countries only with their ID cards, children under 14 need passports.
During summer months, many Romanians living abroad also return to the country to have their documents renewed.
In order to keep up with the demand the Passports Division and local public services where passports can be issued will have extended schedules in the following month, according to MAI. At the same time, a pilot program for online scheduling will be introduced in two Bucharest locations, and in Bacau, Cluj, Iasi, Timis and Vaslui counties, the ministry says.
Starting February of this year, Romanians pay less to have a passport issued as the RON 22 tax for public service and the RON 100 tax for the issuing of a temporary, regular passport were eliminated. However a tax of RON 258 is still required for a regular electronic passport. The tax for a minor’s passport is RON 234, and the tax for a temporary passport is RON 96.
According to World Bank estimates, more than 3.4 million Romanians work abroad. Some one million live in Italy, 785,000 in Spain, 355,000 in Germany, and 150,000 in Great Britain.
Source: Romania Insider