Inauguration of the Philippine Passport Renewal Center at Al Sadd
The Philippine Embassy in Doha yesterday inaugurated the Passport Renewal Center (PaRC) in Doha, further improving passport services for Filipino expatriates in the country. PaRC, a stand-alone facility established by the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) with BLS International, is located on the 17th floor of the Al Shoumoukh Tower, close to the Al Sadd metro station.
The newly opened facility offers Filipino expats in Qatar another accessible and convenient option, besides the embassy, to renew their passports. “Despite the challenges posed by the Covid-19 pandemic, the Philippine Ministry of Foreign Affairs remains proactive in finding solutions that would continue to improve its services, regardless of the challenges,” said Philippine Ambassador Alan L Timbayan , which was joined by BLS. The international regional manager (Middle East) Anne Kurian for the inauguration of the installation.
The envoy noted that the embassy “has set up an online appointment system for passport renewal applications to ensure that health protocols will be strictly observed on its premises.”
“Although the embassy accepts and processes on average more than 200 passport renewal applications per day, the need for passport services remains considerably high,” he said.
The PaRC in Doha has a reception, five processing counters, a section for biometrics and a passport collection area. It will be open 12 hours a day, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., seven days a week, except during Qatar public holidays. Applicants should visit https://qatar.blsphilippinepassport.com/book_appointment.php to make an appointment.
The total cost of passport renewal is QR331, which includes the usual QR240 application fees and QR91 “convenience fees” collected by BLS International for using the PaRC. Passport processing will take at least four to six weeks, and additional charges may be levied by BLS International for door-to-door delivery to the passport holder’s preferred address.
“We are honored to serve the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of the Philippines and confident that our technology-based electronic passport renewal services will be faster and more convenient for the Filipino Diaspora in Qatar. We will simplify the application process and reduce the processing time of applications, which in turn will contribute to the overall improvement in customer service, ”said Shikhar Aggarwal, deputy managing director of BLS International, in a press release. .
To ensure data privacy and security, the Embassy noted that the PaRCs only use DFA’s proprietary electronic passport system to process all personal information. He also stressed that the PaRC in Doha “only deals with the simple renewal of the passport, and not those requiring changes in the biographical details of the passport holder”.
“The department ensured that BLS International employees working in the PaRC and involved in passport renewals were properly vetted, subjected to extensive background checks, and were bound by Philippine rules of confidentiality and confidentiality of data, ”the embassy said.
In addition to the PaRCs in Saudi Arabia (Riyadh and Jeddah) and the United Arab Emirates (Abu Dhabi and Dubai), the embassy noted that passport renewal centers would also operate in other countries, including the United States, the ‘Italy, France and Malaysia, with the aim of better serving Filipino expatriates.