Extending validity of licenses, passports shouldn’t make them more expensive
I would like to thank President Duterte for signing into law the bills extending the period of validity of a passport to 10 years, and that of a driver’s license to five years.
These are anti-red tape measures that hopefully would cut the queues and the time in applying for what are essential documents used by millions.
Extending the legal life of a passport and a license is a commonsensical solution to the inconveniences experienced by the public in the course of acquiring them.
The benefit of having a five-year driver’s license is sadly diluted by the continuing non-availability of the license cards. We hope this will lead to the wiping out of the backlog in delivery.
Another important reminder is that the longer validity of these documents should not prompt an increase in their price tags.
The established rule in setting fees for government-issued documents is that whatever charges imposed should merely recover the cost in processing and producing them.
In short, fees to be retained by the DFA and the LTO must be just enough to recoup expenses in rendering this public service, and not to profit from it.