Ministerial Guidelines for the issue of a Diplomatic & Official Passport

Issuing Diplomatic and Official passports

Any application for a Diplomatic or Official passport for any person outside the standard categories as listed in the tables below requires special approval and must be referred to Canberra for consideration.

Unless otherwise mentioned, the passport is only to be used for official travel. Official travel means travel, the prime purpose of which directly relates to the carrying on of Government business and that business is not related to a competitive commercial activity, whether or not the commercial competitiveness includes other Australian or overseas enterprises.

See ‘ Diplomatic passports: ministerial guidelines ’ and ‘ Official passports: ministerial guidelines ’.

Diplomatic passports: ministerial guidelines

Position of Applicant

Status of Bearer
(bearer is …)

Validity

Purpose

Governor-General

Governor-General of Australia

5 years

All travel

Former Governors-General and their spouses

(as stated)

10 years

All travel

Prime Minister

Prime Minister of Australia

5 years

All travel

Former Prime Ministers and their spouses

(as stated)

10 years

All travel

President of the Senate

President of the Senate of the Parliament of Australia

6 years plus 6 months

All travel

Speaker of the House of Representatives

Speaker of the House of Representatives of the Parliament of Australia

5 years

All travel

Commonwealth Government Ministers

Minister for (Portfolio) of the Government of Australia

5 years

All travel

Presiding Officers (States, NT, ACT and Norfolk Island Parliament)

(position given)

4 years plus 6 months

All travel

Leader of the Opposition

Leader of the Opposition in the Parliament of Australia

5 years

All travel

Deputy Leader of the Opposition

Deputy Leader of the Opposition in the Parliament of Australia

5 years

All travel

Commonwealth Parliamentary Secretaries

(position given)

5 years

All travel

Chief Justice and Justices of the High Court of Australia, Chief Judge of the Federal Court of Australia and of the Family Court

(Position given) of the High/Federal/ Family Court

10 years

All travel

Chief Justices of State or Territory Supreme Courts

Chief Justice in the Supreme Court of (State or Territory)

10 years

Official travel only

Chief of the Defence Force and Chiefs of the Naval, the General and the Air Staffs

(position given) Department of Defence

5 years

Official travel only

Secretaries of Commonwealth Departments

(position given—e.g. Secretary of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, Director-General of Health)

5 years

Official travel only

Public Service Commissioner Public Service & Merit Protection Commission

(position given)

5 years

Official travel only

Australian Government Solicitor

(position given)

5 years

Official travel only

Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security

(position given)

5 years

Official travel only

Director-General, Australian Security Intelligence Organisation

(position given)

5 years

Official travel only

Governor of the Reserve Bank

(position given)

5 years

Official travel only

Director-General, Office of National Assessments

(position given)

5 years

Official travel only

Director, Defence Intelligence Organisation

(position given)

5 years

Official travel only

Director-General, Australian Secret Intelligence Service

(position given)

5 years

Official travel only

Commissioner, Australian Federal Police

(position given)

5 years

Official travel only

Chair, National Crime Authority

(position given)

5 years

Official travel only

Ambassador

Australian Ambassador to (country) (full title)

5 years*

All travel during appointment

High Commissioner

Australian High Commissioner in (country) (full title)

5 years*

All travel during appointment

Consul-General (Consul if Head of Post)

Australian Consul-General/Consul in (city or country) (full title)

5 years*

All travel during appointment

Head of Post – Australian Representatives in Taipei (not to other officers at post)

Observation shall make no reference to Taiwan

5 years*

All official travel to and from locations other than Taiwan

Austrade Executive General Managers attached to an Australian diplomatic mission

Position Designation (see ‘Standard formats for endorsement in passports’)

5 years*

All travel during appointment

Leader of Delegation or sole Australian representative at International Conference or Bilateral or Multilateral Negotiation

(as appropriate)

12 months

Official travel only

Member of the staff of any Commonwealth Department or Instrumentality assigned to a diplomatic post overseas and notified to the receiving country as holding a recognised diplomatic rank.

Position Designation (see ‘Standard formats for endorsement in passports’)

5 years*

All travel during posting

Diplomatic couriers

Diplomatic Courier of the Government of Australia

One 5-year passport, two 2-year passports

Official travel only

State Governors

Governor of the State of (State)

5 years

All travel

Administrators of Cocos (Keeling), Christmas and Norfolk Islands, Lieutenant Governors and former Governors of a State

Administrator of the Territory of (Territory) or Lieutenant Governor or former Governor of the State of (State)

5 years

All travel

State Premier or Territory Chief Minister

Premier of the State of (State) or Chief Minister of (Territory)

4 years plus 6 months

All travel

State or Territory Minister

Minister for (Portfolio) of the Government of (State or Territory)

4 years plus 6 months

All travel

Permanent Head of Premier’s or Chief Minister’s Department (when accompanying Premier or Chief Minister)

Permanent Head of the Premier’s or Chief Minister’s Department of the Government of (State or Territory)

4 years plus 6 months

Official travel only

Person in respect of whom the Minister for Foreign Affairs considers exceptional circumstances apply

(as approved)

As approved

As approved

Spouse of person granted Diplomatic Passport providing the fare is met from official funds

The spouse of (position)

As for spouse

All travel during spouse’s posting or assignment except for privately funded travel out of Australia

Same sex spouse of person granted Diplomatic Passport providing the fare is met from official funds

Member of the household of (position)

As for spouse

All travel during spouse’s posting or assignment except for privately funded travel out of Australia

Member of staff of a State Governor (one staff member only)

Accompanying the (as appropriate)

Period of travel

Official travel only

Executive Directors of International Financial Institutions

(position given)

Duration of appointment plus 6 months

All travel (unless specified in passport)

People acting on behalf of the Commonwealth travelling to locations where there are distinct operational or security factors requiring the use of a Diplomatic Passport#

Travelling on Government business

Duration of posting or assignment

All travel during posting or assignment

Official passports: ministerial guidelines

Position of Applicant

Status of Bearer
(bearer is …)

Validity

Purpose

Member of Parliament (Commonwealth)

Member of the (Senate / House of Representatives) in the Parliament of Australia

5 years

All travel

Member of Parliament (State or Territory)

Member of the Legislative Council / Assembly in the Parliament of (State / Territory)

4 years plus 6 months

All travel

Justices of State or Territory Supreme Courts, Justices of Federal Courts, or other State equivalent

(position given)

10 years (or expected retirement date)

All travel

Other Justices, Judges, Commissioners of the Industrial Relations Commission and Magistrates of any Federal, State or Territory Court

(position given)

10 years

Official travel only

Officers of Commonwealth Parliamentary and Departmental bodies (including those recognised in legislation) and their State and Territory equivalents

Travelling on Government business

Duration of assignment requiring official travel plus 6 months. Maximum of 5 years#

Official travel only

Officers working for Prescribed Agencies under the FMA Act and the CAC Act and their State and Territory equivalents

Travelling on Government business

Duration of assignment requiring official travel plus 6 months. Maximum of 5 years#

Official travel only

Officers who are attached to or posted to overseas diplomatic or consular missions

Travelling on Government business

5 years*

All travel

Spouses of Members of Parliament (Commonwealth)

Spouses of Members of the Senate/House of Representatives in the Parliament of Australia

As for spouse

For travel when accompanying Senators and Members of Parliament, at official expense

Spouses of Justices and Judges

The spouse of Justice or Judge

Period of travel when accompanying Justice or Judge at official expense plus 6 months

For travel when accompanying, Justice or Judge at official expense

Spouse (including same sex spouse) of officer on long-term posting

The spouse of (status shown in the officer’s passport)

Member of the household of (status appearing in spouse’s passport)

5 years*

Same as officer except for privately funded travel out of Australia

Spouse (including same sex spouse) of other Official passport holder

The spouse of an official travelling on Government business

Member of the household of an official travelling on Government business

Period of travel when accompanying official at official expense plus 6 months. Maximum of 5 years

For travel accompanying official at official expense

Staff employed by the Prime Minister, Ministers, Leader and Deputy Leader of the Opposition under the M.o.P (S) Act

Travelling on Government business

Duration of assignment requiring official travel plus 6 months. Maximum of 5 years#

As approved

Chiefs of Staff of Premiers / Chief Ministers

Travelling on Government business

Duration of assignment requiring official travel plus 6 months. Maximum of 5 years#

As approved

People representing the Commonwealth travelling to locations or on assignments where an Official passport is essential for the performance of the Government’s business

Travelling on Government business

Duration of assignment requiring official travel plus 6 months. Maximum of 5 years#

As approved

Person in respect of whom the Minister for Foreign Affairs considers special circumstances apply

As approved

Duration of assignment plus 6 months. Maximum of 5 years

As approved