BANGKOK, Feb 10 –Thailand’s Foreign Ministry passport issuance daily quota at the newly opened temporary passport office at the Queen Sirikit National Convention Centre (QSNCC) was fully booked even before the start of working hours at 8.30am today.
The Department of Consular Affairs’ Passport Division began operation of its new temporary passport office at QSNCC in Bangkok to facilitate the public backlog due to the months-long anti-government protest which blocked the department’s Chaeng Wattana Road offices.
Members of the public reportedly started queuing at 4am while officials started distributing queue numbers at 6am.
At 8am, the daily quota which set a limit at 600 passports per day was fully booked. Department staff told many people who were upset to return tomorrow morning.
The passport issuance process started at 8.30am and applications for 600 people, which is its full capacity, will finish at 2.30pm.
The anti-government protesters shutdown of the Passport Office headquarters inside the Department has affected the issuing of passports, forcing people to use the agency’s Pinklao and Bang Na offices as well as leading some to Chiang Mai, Phuket and Songkhla.
The Passport Division has re-started online passport service system which can speed passport delivery.
The system can be fully operational this week and will increase the number of passports issued from 3,650 to 7,000 per day to accommodate the high public demand.