SINGAPORE – In a significant development, the authorities in Singapore have revealed that the country is set to introduce a new automated border control system for all foreigners, regardless of nationality.
The announcement was made by the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority of Singapore (ICA) on Tuesday, aimed at revolutionizing the immigration clearance process to provide seamless entry and exit experiences.
This innovative system, part of ICA’s New Clearance Concept, is set to eliminate the need for prior registration, allowing visitors to exit Singapore without presenting their passports. Scheduled for operational rollout in late 2024, the automated lanes represent a departure from traditional manual counters and existing lanes at checkpoints. The primary objective is to streamline immigration clearance for both residents and visitors, enhancing efficiency and convenience.
Moreover, the initiative follows the installation of over 160 automated lanes in 2023, with plans for an additional 230 lanes in 2024 to boost clearance capacity further. Presently, only Singapore residents and passport holders from 60 specified jurisdictions can utilize the Automated Border Control System under the Automated Clearance Initiative.
The New Clearance Concept is designed to ensure seamless immigration clearance through the use of multi-modal biometrics, capturing iris, fingerprint, and facial details. It is imperative for travelers to pre-enroll these biometric identifiers with the ICA or during arrival immigration clearance to facilitate a smooth clearance process.
Overall, the introduction of the automated border control system marks a significant milestone in Singapore’s efforts to leverage technology for efficient border management.
It is to be noted that the passport of Singapore continues to rank first in the Henley Passport Index 2024, with visa-free access to 194 destinations. This ranking reflects Singapore’s global mobility and reinforces its position as a hub for international travel and business.
Singapore, a city-state in Southeast Asia, boasts a diverse population of around 5.7 million people. Renowned for its modern skyline and lush green spaces, notable attractions include Marina Bay Sands, Gardens by the Bay, and Sentosa Island. With a highly developed free-market economy, Singapore thrives on finance, trade, and manufacturing, ranking among the world’s top financial centers.