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Digitial Birth Registration across Asia and Africa

Plan International has conducted Digital Birth Registration (DBR) technical analyses in Kenya and Pakistan and others are being carried out in Malawi, Bangladesh and Indonesia.

We worked directly with the government of Pakistan to finalise the technical analysis and get it endorsed so it could be incorporated into national civil registration and vital statistics plans. We are now working with the government to develop a prototype of the proposed technology solution and looking for further support from financial and development institutions and the private sector to get the funding and support we need.

This builds on the work we have been conducting with the government (national and local), including the implementation of a computerised birth registration project carried out with our local partners -- Agha Khan Rural Support Program, Diamar Poverty Alleviation Program and the National Database and Registration Authority (NADRA) -- in seven districts of Gilgit-Baltistan between 2001 and 2014. 

The next step is to start a digital birth registration programme in three of Pakistan’s provinces – Punjab, Sindh and Azad Jammu and Kashmir – at first on a small scale, but gradually growing to reach all of the 2.3 million people in the districts and then beyond.

“For digital birth registration to work, you need three things. You need to have political will, you need to have infrastructure in terms of the technology, and  you need to have the right technical understanding and support,” says Rashid Javed, Plan International Pakistan’s Country Director.

“When these three ingredients are able to come together, it really gives a great push in terms of digital birth registration in Pakistan.”

With this type of system in place, the birth registering process becomes much simpler and children are far more likely to have their births registered and be able to get the legal identity that opens the door to so many of their rights.