Ukraine's Verkhovna Rada (parliament) passed legislation allowing the use of e-passports, displayed via a government-controlled Diia (Дія) app, on equal terms with actual passports.
A total of 302 MPs voted at the second reading for the bill On Amendments to the Law On the Unified State Demographic Register and Documents Confirming Ukrainian Citizenship, Identity or Special Status, at an extraordinary plenary session of parliament on Tuesday.
According to the bill, e-passport and e-passport for travelling abroad are issued free of charge. Their electronic copies can be submitted and used in the same cases when the legislation provides for the provision and use of copies of a passport of a citizen of Ukraine and a passport for travelling abroad. They are presented instead of and without additional presentation of the corresponding paper passports, documents on the registration number of the taxpayer's registration card, documents on the place of residence.
According to the presidential press service, President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky described as a great success the adoption of the law on digital passports and thanked lawmakers.
"It will greatly simplify the lives of citizens and start large-scale digitization of business and the state. In addition, digital passports are much safer and more convenient than paper ones. We have created a unique world case that we can and should be proud of. We are building a state in a smartphone," the President said.
Ukraine has become the first country in the world to legalize digital passports, Zelensky stressed.
All e-passports are generated through the Unified State Web Portal of Electronic Services.
It is noted that e-passports, including those for foreign travel, shall not be used at border crossing, except for the cases where it is necessary to confirm the identity of a Ukrainian citizen crossing into Ukraine; entering and leaving the temporarily occupied territory; entering, staying and residing in or moving within the border areas, sailing into the country's territorial sea and internal waters.
The corresponding law comes into force on August 23, 2021.