Jakarta (ANTARA News) - Indonesia has introduced iris scans to allow registered passengers to pass through airport immigration in seconds, officials said.
Jakarta's Soekarno-Hatta International Airport Thursday became the first in Asia to use the technology, which is already being used or tested at some US and European airports, the company which launched the system said.
The "Saphire" system requires air passengers to register and pay an annual fee of 220 dollars to take advantage of the iris-scan which allows them to bypass normal immigration and passport checks.
Justice and Human Rights Minister Hamid Awaluddin said the system would improve security and make air travel more efficient.
"The launch of the programme will enhance the quality of services provided by immigration as well as from a security point of view," he was quoted by AFP as saying in a statement.
The system was developed by PT Angkasa Pura Schiphol, an Indonesian-Dutch
joint venture firm.
Company president director Djoko Santoso said it expected up to 4,000 people to use the service next year, adding that the programme would be extended to other cities such as Medan and Surabaya, if it was popular. (*)