Immigration & Checkpoints Authority (ICA) has announced on Thursday that by 2020 the paper forms to apply for Singapore passport and NRIC's will be replaced with online services.
ICA also introduced 13 more e-services which are now available on MyICA portal that was launched on June 27 this year. It is an "integrated personalised portal where customers can access ICA's e-Services on a secure electronic platform."
In a news release, ICA stated they have taken a step ahead towards the new digital world as the authority aims to "achieve 100% online applications for these services by 2020" that supports Singapore's Smart Nation goals.
The newly introduced e-services include:
- Apply for Passport
- Replace/Re-register for NRIC
- Request for Letter for Change of Address
- Apply for Student's Pass
- Apply for Certificate of Extract of, or search for Record of Birth/Death
- Apply for Visa for Entry into Singapore
- Apply for APEC Business Travel Card
- Apply for Extension of Stay in Singapore (Visit Pass)
- Apply for Long-Term Visit Pass
- Pre-Marriage Long-Term Visit Pass Assessment
- Apply for Re-Entry Permit
- Apply for Permanent Residence
- Apply for Singapore Citizenship
- Check validity of Immigration Passes and NRIC
- Book appointment with ICA
ICA said that before introducing these services, they were gathering feedback and suggestions related to the portal to make it more convenient and improve MyICA website across different web browser and mobile devices. They are now looking forward to its development and enhancement that will showcase more user-friendly features.
In addition, they said "ICA will progressively cease the use of hardcopy application forms, as we work towards the target of having all applications for its e-Services1 submitted online by 2020. In 2017, 88% of more than 5.5 million applications were already submitted online. The majority of hard copy applications were for passports and NRICs, and submitted at ICA Building in person or mailed to ICA."
Many users may find the process quite difficult while using the website. But, ICA assured that users can learn about the portal's feature and the e-services through an online tutorial. They also said that those who are not familiar with the online process of applying for passports and NRICs online can watch a video to understand the step-by-step process. This video will be available on ICA's website and Facebook page soon.
In case of an elderly person, who is less aware of the internet use, any family member or friends will be allowed to apply on behalf of him/ her via MyICA portal.
People, who don't have proper internet access, can also visit eLobby at ICA Building and make use of the self-service kiosks to submit their applications (except applications for Permanent Residence and for Singapore Citizenship).