1.The 8th Meeting of the ASEAN Directors-General of Immigration Departments and Heads of Consular Affairs Divisions of the Ministries of Foreign Affairs (DGICM) was held in Brunei Darussalam from 11th to 13th October 2004. It was chaired by Mr. Zainal Abidin Dato Paduka Haji Ahmad, Acting Director of Immigration and National Registration Department, Brunei Darussalam. The Meeting was attended by the ASEAN Heads of Immigration and Consular Affairs Divisions of the Ministries of Foreign Affairs and the ASEAN Secretariat.

 

2.The Meeting reviewed and considered measures to further accelerate the realization of the Work Programme to implement the ASEAN Plan of Action on Immigration Matters adopted in 2002.

 

3.Complying with the Bali Concord II and the ASEAN Tourism Agreement, the Meeting agreed to step up efforts in harmonizing the visa issuance procedures, where possible, for foreign nationals traveling into ASEAN.

 

4.The Meeting welcomed the offer by the Philippines to hold a workshop on Anti Fraud Travel Documents.

 

5.The Meeting shared the experiences of various delegations in their efforts to improve the effectiveness of immigration management and enhance co-operation on immigration matters among Member Countries. In this regard, the Meeting took note of Member Country reports and welcomed the progress made by several Member Countries on Biometric Passports and the proposal to improve passports in accordance with ICAO standards.

 

6.The Meeting noted the initiatives made by Member Countries in promoting seamless clearance through the use of Smart Cards.

 

7.The Meeting welcomed the progress on visa exemption for ASEAN nationals made by Member Countries in line with the Bali Concord II and the draft ASEAN Framework Agreement on Visa Exemption.

 

8.The Meeting took note of Cambodia’s presentation on “Strengthening Regional Security Through Cambodia’s Enhanced Border Control Capacity”.

 

9.The Meeting welcomed the offer by Cambodia to host the 9th DGICM in Cambodia in 2005.

 

10.The Meeting was held in the traditional spirit of ASEAN solidarity and cordiality and enjoyed the warm hospitality offered by the Government of Brunei Darussalam.