The Singapore passport is getting a makeover, announced the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority (ICA) of Singapore on Thursday, October 26. This comes soon after the passport index by global financial advisory firm Arton Capital declared that the Singapore passport is at the top of the list of powerful passports in the world.
Having achieved a visa-free score of 159, the Singapore passport is now the "most powerful passport in the world", guaranteeing a visa-less visit to 159 countries, making it top the list of powerful passports, which is assessed on the basis of the amount of cross-border access it brings to the holder.
Adding another feather to its cap, the Singapore biometric passport has been given a new design and additional security features that will make it hard to be forged or duplicated, ensuring a transparent immigration and travelling process.
The change in design has been made in the visa page, the new version of which will feature Singapore's six major landmarks – Esplanade, Marina Barrage, the Singapore Botanic Gardens, Punggol New Town, Singapore Sports Hub and Gardens by the Bay.
The ICA announcement says that the new passport design complies with the recommendations and rules set by the International Civil Aviation Organisation.
In the new design, the passport holder's image can be viewed as a positive and negative portrait if seen in a tilted form under transmitted light. A surface transformation design also appears on the passport, displaying light reflective and animated effects when viewed from different angles. The design is shaped like the national flower of Singapore- the Vanda 'Miss Joaquim' orchid.
Additional security features include the Multiple Laser Image (MLI) of the Singapore map, a new and improved Diffractive Optically Variable Image Device (DOVID) with an achromatic effect, and an embossed tactile design.
All being said, citizens possessing an old passport need not panic or get it replaced as the old design will also be valid for travel. The new design will be applicable for citizens whose passports will be issued from October 30.
The venue from which you can collect your passport, between October 30 and November 15, 2017, is the ICA building. After these dates, passports will be available at selected post offices.