In a bid to ease the passport renewal process for Philippine nationals living in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA), The Republic of the Philippines Department of Foreign Affairs and VFS Global, the world's largest visa outsourcing and technology services specialist for governments and diplomatic missions worldwide, have signed a contract to provide Passport Renewal services in Riyadh, Jeddah and Al Khobar.
H.E. Adnan VillalunaAlonto, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Republic of the Philippines to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabiaand Mr. Sumanth Kapoor, Head of VFS Global - KSA & Bahrain, inaugurated the first Philippine ePassport Renewal Centre in Riyadh city in a formal ceremony on 15 September 2020. The ceremony was also attended by Mr. AbdulazizAlsawaly, Director, Business Partnership, the Diplomatic Quarter General Authority, Riyadh, KSA. Similar centrewas inaugurated in Al Khobar by Mr. Christopher Patrick T. Aro, Minister and Consul General of the Republic of the Philippines to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the centre in Jeddah was inaugurated on 05 October 2020 byMr. Edgar BarrairoBadajos, Consul General of the Philippine Consulate in Jeddah.
All three centreshave started to accept passport renewal requests from Saturdayto Thursday between 08:00 AM to 08:00 PM.
This is the first time The Republic of the Philippines Department of Foreign Affairs has outsourced its passport renewal process in KSA. Prior to this, Philippine residents in the KSA had to visit the Philippine Consulate in Jeddah or the Embassy in Riyadh for passport renewal. With the opening of the new ePassport Renewal Centres, customers will have an additional avenue to complete the process.
Mr Chris Dix, Head of Business Development, VFS Global, said, “We would like to thank The Republic of the Philippines Department of Foreign Affairs for their faith in us. Our Passport and Consular services have been growing from strength to strength, and we look forward to bringing those best in class services to the Philippines nationals here in the Kingdom.”
In order to ensure a safeenvironment for employees and customers, VFS Global has established standardized protective measures to be followed across the centres, including specific social distancing and sanitation mandates.All customers are subjected to body temperature checks at the entrance to assess their health conditions. Any customer exhibiting COVID-19 symptoms, including fever, cough and breathing difficultieswill not be permitted to enter the centre and will be requested to return once the health condition improves. Additionally, all customers and VFS Global employees are required to wear a face mask and gloves within the centre.
VFS Global already operates 90 centres providing Passport and Consular Services to 10 Governments in 29 countries worldwide. The organisation’s transparent, scalable and intuitively designed services in the passport application and consular services domain delivers on a range of key requirements from online appointment booking and customer support to front-office services, biometric enrolment and doorstep return-delivery of passports and other documentation.
VFS Global is responsible only for accepting applications for client governments. All applications submitted will continue to be assessed and processed by the respective client governments. Timelines for turnaround are as per the discretion of the authorities. VFS Global has no influence on the process at the Embassies or Consulates.
The Philippine ePassport Renewal Centre in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia: