Justice Minister anders Ygeman. Photo: Ingvar Karmhed/TT and Pontus Lundahl/TT
Justice Minister anders Ygeman. Photo: Ingvar Karmhed/TT and Pontus Lundahl/TT

Move to limit Swedish passports on the black market

In an attempt to cut the number of Swedish passports on the black market, the government wants to limit the number of times a person can get a new passport.

Every year up to 60,000 Swedish passports are reported missing. Some of them end up in the hands of criminals. Justice Minister Anders Ygeman now wants to limit the right of getting a new passport again and again.

"We've got people who take out 10-15 passports and it cannot go on like that," he told Swedish Radio in an interview on Saturday.

According to Ygeman, a Swedish passport is like hard currency on the black market, since you can travel almost everywhere in the world without needing a visa.

Last year, there were 170,000 missing Swedish passports, Swedish Radio News reports. Many of them have of course been lost through normal carelessness, but others have been sold to human traffickers. Many many they are, Ygeman does not know, but if a sufficient amount of Swedish passports are used by the wrong people, it may affect the options for Swedish travellers abroad, says Ygeman.

"This whole discussion is sufficient to risk causing more countries to introduce visas against Sweden," he said.

A review of the situation is currently underway, but the minister knows what he would like to do.

"I picture that the police must question whose who have lost a large amount of passports, to ensure that there is nothing criminal behind it. When you have lost three passports, you should no longer be allowed to get a new Swedish passport, but a pink passport, which is just valid for one trip," he said.

What will you achieve by that? asked Swedish Radio's reporter.
"You put a limit to how many passports an individual can take out, and limit the the supply of Swedish passports on the black market."

Our journalism is based on credibility and impartiality. Swedish Radio is independent and not affiliated to any political, religious, financial, public or private interests.
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