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NICOP condition waived only for emigrant workers, clarifies ministry

ISLAMABAD: The Ministry of Overseas Pakistanis & Human Resource Development on Thursday rebuffed reports that the requirement of National Identity Card for Overseas Pakistanis (NICOP) has been revoked for all Pakistanis living abroad.

A spokesperson of the ministry said that media reports quoted that NICOP is not a requirement anymore for overseas Pakistanis, whereas ministry has only issued directions to not demand NICOP from emigrant workers for registration at its Protectorate of Emigrants Offices.

NADRA Ordinance 2000 imposed compulsory requirement of National Identity for Overseas Pakistanis (NICOP) on the intending emigrants. Therefore, the NICOP became a precondition for protector clearance as no intending emigrant could be registered without having NICOP, he said.

He further added that NICOP imposition is country specific and structure of fees varies from country to country. NICOP fee is outside the operative domain of emigration laws which has always remained a cause of concern for the emigrant community as whole because it leads to substantial financial burden for them alongside the increased load of work on both the protector and intending emigrant, he said.

Referring to a meeting between the Secretaries of Ministries of Interior and Overseas Pakistanis & HRD, he said that it has been decided that Protector of Emigrants will not insist for NICOP to protect clearance of the passports of intending emigrants.

The directions have been issued to all the offices of Protector of Emigrants that NICOP is not to be demanded at the time of registration. If an emigrant who intends to work in another country produces a valid CNIC, his/her registration will be done. He said that the Bureau of Emigration and Overseas Employment and Overseas Employment Corporation have already been directed to comply with the orders.



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