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Plastic IDs to Replace Paper Passports by 2016

A new, plastic identification card. A. Mahonin

Plastic identification cards will start replacing paper passports as the main identification and domestic travel documents for Russian citizens according to a new initiative from the Federal Migration Service.

The new documents will start being issued in certain regions in 2015 with the full-scale replacement of paper passports planned to have been completed by 2016, the service said Tuesday.

The new IDs will state the holder's name, gender, place of birth, the place and time of the document's issue as well as a photograph and signature. The plastic card will also record data electronically, allowing it to be scanned quickly, and will be valid for ten years, Vedomosti reported.

Paper-based passports currently in use will remain valid until 2030 to give people enough time to get used to new form of identification.

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