(MENAFN - Khaleej Times) The Emirates Identity Card will be required for residents to renew their residency visas in the UAE, a senior official has said.
The Emirates Identity Authority (EIDA) will begin to introduce the requirement gradually in the coming months, starting from the northern emirates and moving across the country.
Around six million residents have yet to register their details with the authority, and the deadline is December 2010.
Dr Ali Al Khouri, Deputy Head of the Higher Committee at EIDA, said the plan would be introduced in Umm Al Quwain, and then in Abu Dhabi, Ajman and Fujairah.
Its a gradual implementation to start within those particular emirates, then the rest, said Al Khouri.
The news comes as the deadline for registering 6million residents on the ID card scheme draws nearer.
Al Khoury said there were already signs of a last-minute rush. For the past four years, the authority had been able to register around a million residents, he said.
Lately 500,000 residents have been registered in only six-months.
Identity card demand will rise especially towards the end of the year, yet the centers will be ready to handle the crowds, and ensure a much easier and smoother registration using the latest technologies and strategies.
Plans to tie residency with an ID card are part of a wider strategy of the government.
The Abu Dhabi police have also indicated that ID cards would soon be needed to register vehicle transactions.
Towards the end of 2010, the EIDA will link all governmental and most private sector transactions with the identity card, to boost the e-government services, solve financial problems easily, and end online identity theft, said Al Khouri. The aim is to register the remaining six million residents by the end of December 2010.
By Ahmed Al Majaida