You will soon be able to zip through immigration formalities at Bangladesh's largest airport.
Nearly a year after inauguration, the six electronic gates (e-gates) for automated border control at Dhaka's Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport are all set to become operational in June.
"All works to unveil the automated immigration system at the Dhaka airport have nearly been completed," Md Abdullah Al Masud Chowdhury, additional secretary (security and immigration wing) of the Home Ministry's security services division, told UNB.
"The e-gates will be opened to the air travellers in June," he said.
On June 30, 2021, Home Minister Asaduzzaman Khan Kamal inaugurated the e-gates at the Dhaka airport, marking the country’s step into the digital era of travel.
Authorities then said that the e-gates would automatically complete all the immigration formalities of passengers with e-passports, minimising human interaction.
“E-gates are being introduced in Bangladesh like developed countries across the globe," the additional secretary said.
"Once operational, these e-gates will reduce queues at the manual immigration counters as passengers having e-passports will be able to complete all formalities in a very short time," said Chowdhury.
E-passports have an in-built microprocessor chip containing details of the holder. The e-gates will identify an air passengers after scanning the e-passport. And the process ensures high security during the verification of travel documents.
"The company installing the e-gate software, took time to complete the job. Now, this is in the final stages. We will open the e-gates next month. Global travellers will have a hassle-free experience at the airport," the top government official said.
"E-gates will eventually be introduced at all airports and land ports in Bangladesh in phases," Chowdhury said.
On January 22, 2020, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina inaugurated the e-passport and automated border control (ABC) management.
Earlier, on April 24, 2016, Hasina announced the distribution of e-passports to ease the immigration process for air passengers.
The department of immigration and passports got the e-gates installed at the Dhaka airport through Veridos GmbH, a German-based company, which got the contract for the ABC project in July 2018.