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IDB approves $50 million loan to improve civil registry procedures in Peru

Citizens of Peru will have better access to civil registry and identification services thanks to an $80-million-dollar project, of which $50 million will be financed by the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB).

The initiative seeks to lower the costs of obtaining identification documents, with improved coverage for in-person services, better attention for disadvantaged people and the incorporation of digital technologies.

Peru has already made important progress in registering and identifying its population, with 4.4 percent of its citizens lacking registration, compared to an average of 8 percent in all of Latin America and the Caribbean. However, besides extending its coverage, Peru needs to enhance the quality of services provided by the National Registry of Identification and Civil Status (RENIEC).

Among other factors, this level of quality is hampered by the fact that 75 percent of all registry records are not digitalized. This obliges people to go to a registry office when they need a copy of a document. In many cases people no longer live in the town where they were born, which entails long and costly trips to get the papers they need. In addition, Peruvians still need a paper photograph to get a new national identity document or renew an old one.

Digitalization of registration records and the implementation of electronic registration will benefit nearly eight million Peruvians. People will also be able to get registration tasks done on-line, which will save them the trouble of going physically to a civil registry office.

The requirement of purchasing a photo to obtain a national identity card will also be eliminated. This alone is expected to cut transaction costs by approximately 10 soles ($3), taking into account also the time that will be saved. Furthermore, the RENIEC agency will work more efficiently, reducing its use of paper and lowering the cost of sending registration documents, thanks to scanning and the decentralization of the printing of national identity cards.

The IDB’s $50 million loan will be disbursed over four years and has a repayment term that ends on December 15, 2027. The interest rate is pegged to the LIBOR.

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