Local passport production moves to UK

| 06/05/2015 | 18 Comments

Cayman News Service(CNS): Cayman Islands passports will no longer be produced on-island and applications for new or renewals of local passports will now be sent to the UK. Officials said that from Friday 8 May the local Passport and Corporate Services Office in George Town will no longer accept C1 and C2 application forms. The local office is still responsible for the collection, vetting and approval of passport applications but the passports themselves will be printed by HM Passport Office in Britain and then returned to the local office for delivery to the owners.

The move by the UK to take over passport production for its territories proved controversial and was seen by the OT governments as a retrograde step in what should be increasingly autonomous relationships with the British government.

Premier Alden McLaughlin said his ministry had pressed hard to retain some control over passports after the announced changes and the introduction of more secure travel documents. Anguilla, Bermuda, British Virgin Islands, Turks and Caicos, Montserrat and St Helena, as well as the Cayman Islands, have all worked closely with HMPO in the UK since the centralisation project first began to be discussed in 2010.

“While this process was started before this administration took the helm of government, I am happy that we have been able to have good, frank discussions with the UK about our own unique needs and desires for a Cayman Islands passport,” McLaughlin said. “One of our concerns was keeping within our own house the ability to approve or deny passports and the distribution of documents, and we have been successful in that regard.”

The move to centralize BOT passport production was in part to ensure that all British nationals have access to the latest biometric passports that feature internationally recognized security standards.  These are the ‘Scenic UK’ series of biometric passports with enhanced security features which HMPO has made available to British citizens everywhere since 2010. Printing passports in the UK removes the need to deliver blank passports across the world, which the UK government has said will protect the integrity and security of British passports.

Head of Passport and Corporate Services Janice McLean outlined some of the changes to the process that Caymanian applicants can expect to see.

First of all they will be required to complete a new form with a specific layout. Which are already available on the Department of Immigration website.  Secondly, customers are asked to allow a four week window for processing, as the passports will need to come from the UK.

A policy on what constitutes urgent travel has been compiled and will be implemented uniformly across the BOTs for issuing emergency passports.

The local passport office on Elgin Avenue will close for training today, Wednesday 6 May.

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Comments (18)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    I got my Jamaican passport from the local consulate in three weeks. All I had to do was complete the form and confirm that I did not wear any type of headgear for religious reasons. Peace and love losers.

  2. Just Askin' says:

    Wait, does this mean I can no longer link my brederen down at the passport office and circumvent the process? Do they not know how important I am?

  3. Anonymous says:

    So apply for your British Passport and overlap them so you never have an expired passport. The only use of a Cayman Passport anyway is that you don’t have to fill out the immigration form. I mean you need to apply for a visa to go to a country to get another visa.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Hello, on the top of the cover page does it not say ‘ British Passport’. In that case, just fill out the form correctly and just wait for your British Passport to be processed in Britain. It’s your fault if you leave applications until the last minute or fail to complete them correctly. All passports must have at least 6 months validity remaining on them to qualify for entry into most countries, this is not just a British requirement.
    As a Brit, I’m sick and tired of those who whinge and whine about privileges that most of Africa, in fact most of the 3rd world are literally dying to have. So you have to wait a few weeks, or maybe months, but it’s better than drowning in the Mediterranean for a dream that may never be.
    And as for the idiot that thinks waiting for a passport is a disaster, tell that to the 1000’s of people who are dying on the shores of Europe to gain a better life. You have no clue what real suffering and inconvenience is living your cosseted life here on Cayman.
    Personally, I’d make you independent and save the cost of diplomatic, security and military support for the people who pay for it.

    • Anonymous says:

      So you’re saying that just because other situations are worse people should not object to their situations worsening?

      • Anonymous says:

        Having to fill out a form correctly and leaving enough time for it to be processed is not a worsening of your life you sad and shallow individual. British passport holders in Britain have to do the same, with equally long waiting times, that’s just the modern world of global security.
        Of course, if it’s all too much of an inconvenience and it’s having such a devastating effect on your life, them please feel free to withdraw your application and stay at home.

      • Anonymous says:

        What he is saying, you complain too damn much! Just get off your butt, be proactive and fill out the form in time and you will get your passport on time, nothing hard about that!

    • Anonymous says:

      Hey, I’m from Cayman and I find your views kinda disturbing to put it simply, you keep trying to equate Caymanians with Africans as if our situations are the same, they are not. and I don’t know who waits “until the last minute” to apply for their passport, it’s once every ten years, not that hard to do. as for the ‘costs to the people of Britain’, 1.)you don’t defend us, (who are you supposedly defending us from, Mexico?, Cuba?, Jamaica?!), 2.) diplomatically the UK opposes us in all manner of subject and field save for perhaps, conservation and the like, plus the Cayman Islands government negotiates most deals with other nations by itself only receiving the UK’s rubber stamp, in short, we don’t need you, after hurricane Ivan it was the U.S.’s FEMA who assisted us, what did Britain do to help us rebuild? (Hint: not much) and economically, we depend far more on the United states for our prosperity, UK goods and services are more of a specialty than a necessity and I reckon that Brits are the ones living “cosseted” lives what with their Government benefits, free healthcare, cheap goods, cheap travel etc,etc. Basically I wanted to invalidate all of your points. finally, it should e of note that I actually support the repatriation of the Passport production, don’t mid the additional wait and would actually rather just have the standard British passport instead of carrying two everywhere I travel. where your vitriolic sentiments of Cayman and Caymanians came from, I have no idea and honestly I don’t care. just came to call your bs and state my opinion, cheers
      p.s. I actually serve the UK in the Royal Navy now so yeah, I actually protect you, not the other way around. peace

  5. Sharkey says:

    Do we realize the value of a pass port , when some other person can modify your pass port and use it . With the pass port been biometric by England, I trust more that it done correctly, and the mission would be better handled . It’s called in the fight against terrorism .

  6. Just Sayin' says:

    Got mine back in less than three weeks. Now if only everyone else knew how to follow instructions……

  7. Anonymous says:

    This is ridiculous..Alden ain’t no Mckeeva..):

  8. Anonymous says:

    HMPO makes the Cayman government look like a whirl of efficiency. For the avoidance of doubt, the Cayman government is not a whirl of efficiency. It is more like a glacier with a broken leg that has been bolted on to the mountain. But HMPO’s sheer bloody minded determination not to allow even the most miniscule expenditure of effort beyond unlocking the door and making a pot of tea is on a whole different level. It’s like Mike Tyson versus…Borat. If you have a 10 year passport and it has less than 9 years and 6 months of validity left I would say you are already too late to get a replacement before it expires. But that’s just my experience, others may have been less fortunate.

  9. Anonymous says:

    I cant see that the new form is available on the website….the C1 and C2 are still there. Also no new notification or alert that there has been a change. Why are these things always done so badly?!

  10. Anonymous says:

    What a disaster

    • Anonymous says:

      A disaster? No, that’s what’s happened in Nepal, this is a minor inconvenience. Leave more time and fill out the form properly, it’s not difficult.

  11. Anonymous says:

    4 Weeks??? It took me 3.5 months to get my UK passport for my child from the UK- and countless useless phone calls, emails and call holding and being dropped- this is a disaster- if you need a passport prepare to wait months now- the UK couldn’t even manage their own caseload now they insist on taking extra work on?

    • Anonymous says:

      Received mine in under 3 weeks and heard similar stories with others. This was just 8 months ago that I applied so can’t imagine a reason for it to be worse now.

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