The Vietnam Immigration Department will endorse the redesigned passport with birthplace information, starting from September 15, according to Lieutenant General To An Xo, the Ministry of Public Security’s spokesman.
Xo said that the ministry has requested all Vietnamese representative agencies abroad to do the same with the blue-covered passport.
Besides, the Public Security Ministry will submit to the government and the National Assembly's Standing Committee a resolution to include birthplace on the information page of the new passports.
The new ordinary passport form of Vietnam. Photo: Chinhphu.vn
“The move aims to facilitate foreign travel of Vietnamese citizens, as recently several countries suspended the issuance of visas to holders of the new Vietnamese passports due to the lack of the birthplace information,” Xo stressed.
Earlier, several countries had said that they would not issue visas to Vietnamese applicants if their passport lacks birthplace information.
The new Vietnamese passport has been in use since July 1 this year. Each page of the new passport is printed with images of popular Vietnamese scenic landscapes and cultural heritages. The old, green-covered passports will continue to be valid till they expire.
The United States was the latest country to require new Vietnamese passports to include an endorsement page stating birth information.
The US Embassy in Hanoi announced that as of October 3, all Vietnamese visa applicants with the new blue-covered passports must have their place of birth stated in their passport before being allowed a visa interview.
Applicants who do not have a place of birth information in their blue cover passports will not be interviewed and will need to reschedule their appointments, the US Embassy said, adding that it will continue to interview applicants whose passports lack the endorsement until September 29.
Previously, some European countries, including Germany in late July, followed by Czech and Spain in the following weeks, also rejected the new passports due to the omission of the birthplace information, which they said causes difficulties in properly verifying the identity of the holder. They later accepted the new passports on the condition that the birthplace information is added to the passports in the appendix section.
However, a few countries, like France and the United Kingdom, have stated that they would accept the new passports as it is but urged people to stay informed about any possible changes or policy updates closely.