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12 June, 2020

EU countries change ID cards, Malta is already issuing documents of a new sample

EU member states will issue new ID cards by August 2, 2020, in accordance with the regulations adopted in 2019. Documents should become more consistent and secure. Malta has already begun issuing new ID cards.
The Member States of the European Union have started the transition to the new enhanced protection ID-cards.

EU countries change ID cards, Malta is already issuing documents of a new sample
Photo: Adobe Stock

According to Regulation 2019/1157 of 20 June 2019 on enhanced security of documents of citizens and residents of the Union, the process should start in all Member States 一 by 2 August 2020. Malta has already started issuing new generation ID cards.

Replacing ID cards in EU countries

EU member states should issue new ID-cards by August 2, 2020. They will be issued to new applicants and to those who change their documents and renew their residence permits. All cards must be replaced by new ones by August 3, 2031.

ID-cards are changed in accordance with the regulation on strengthening their security, which was adopted in the EU in 2019. It established strict requirements for documents of citizens and residents of European countries. The new standards are aimed at unification of documents, protection against forgery, traffic control.

For ID-cards have provided a number of new mandatory security features. For example, cards must contain a photo holder and two fingerprints in compatible digital formats. The new format documents are expected to help in the fight against terrorism and organised crime.

As of November 2020, there are 86 types of identity cards and 181 types of documents for residents in the EU. All 26 EU member states issue ID-cards, but they are obligatory to be received only in 15 countries.

New ID-cards of Malta

Malta is one of the first countries to issue documents in accordance with the new requirements. Malta's new e-passport was recognized as the most secure in the world by the High Security Printing EMEA conference.

Malta's new ID cards are as secure as possible against counterfeiting. Among the innovations is laser engraving of the cardholder's personal data on a polycarbonate substrate, which complicates the process of making a fake.

The appearance of the card has changed. Applicants who apply for residence permits in Malta for investment will not have to worry about the security of their personal data.

Who will be the first to receive the new ID cards of Malta?

Anton Sevasta, Director-General of Identity Malta, explained that new ID-cards will be issued on applications for receiving or replacing a document. Cards issued before the introduction of new documents are valid until the expiration of the period specified on them.

New format cards will be issued to UK citizens, including those who remain in Malta after the transitional period after Brexit. Earlier we said that the policy of the two states is aimed at maintaining close cooperation, so the citizens of Malta may not be affected by the consequences of Britain leaving the EU.

Obtaining a residence permit is a mandatory step towards obtaining Malta citizenship for investment. The quota limit for the current citizenship program is almost exhausted. In order to have time to take part in it, applicants must apply for a residence permit before July 31, 2020, and for Due Diligence for citizenship by September 30, 2020. Those who do not have time will be able to participate in the next program. It is expected that it will become more expensive by € 200-300 thousand.

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EU countries change ID cards, Malta is already issuing documents of a new sample