Taiwan postpones electronic ID card until 2021

Project needs equipment and sample from Europe, but impossible at present due to coronavirus pandemic: MOI

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Taiwan is postponing the introduction of the eID until the first half of 2021 (image courtesy of MOI)

Taiwan is postponing the introduction of the eID until the first half of 2021 (image courtesy of MOI)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — The Ministry of Interior (MOI) is postponing the introduction of electronic identity cards (eID) from October until the first half of 2021 due to the Wuhan coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, reports said Saturday (July 4).

The new timetable saw the launch take place either in the first or second quarter of next year, depending on the virus situation at that time, CNA reported.

The necessary machinery would have had to be imported into Taiwan last April, but the pandemic already made that impossible, causing delays for the introduction of the project. MOI officials said Taiwan also needed to send people over to Europe to pick up the samples of the eID card, another process turned difficult due to quarantine regulations.

The new card will incorporate the National Health Insurance Card and driver’s license information. Identification technologies will be applied to deter digital theft, with passwords necessary to access data such as the names of the cardholder’s spouse and parents, officials have said.

The MOI has insisted that the cards are made in Taiwan, though some of the necessary equipment needs to be imported from Europe, CNA reported.