In June 2009, Kuwait’s eID card program for ID and eGovernment services using Gemalto technology was deployed. The primary contractor, Kuwaiti company Al-Kharafi, has ordered one million multi-app eID cards for citizens, embedding dual interface (contact and contactless) smart card technologies, and two million more for foreign residents that implement highly-secure printing features.
Gemalto is also providing support and training, project management and software.
The national ID card is compulsory for all inhabitants of Kuwait and is in compliance with the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) regulations designed to allow citizens of all GCC countries to travel freely between member states.
The Gemalto contactless technology built in the card increases speed, convenience and security of identity verification at border crossings.
In the future, the contact functionality will allow cardholders to access eGovernment services and perform transactions in a simple and secure manner. Foreign residents will use their card as their national ID document within the Kuwaiti territory. In the second phase, it could be upgraded to a microprocessor card.
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