As 2019 begins, the Japanese passport has been ranked the most powerful in the world on the Henley Passport Index, the original ranking of all the world’s passports. Based on data from the International Air Transport Association, the index ranks countries according to the number of destinations their holders can access without a prior visa.
Asia makes a strong showing because Japanese citizens have access to 190 destinations, and Singapore and South Korea come in joint second place, with access to 189 world destinations. While these Asian countries top the ranks, Europe is well-represented as Germany and France come in third place, with a visa-free/visa-on-arrival score of 188. Denmark, Finland, Italy and Sweden hold joint fourth place, while Spain and Luxembourg tie for sixth place.
The Henley Passport Index and Global Mobility Report notes that the Asian countries’ continued dominance of the index reflects the extraordinary effect that international mobility and migration has had on the region. “China’s Thousand Talents scheme, Thailand’s entrepreneur visa, and similar initiatives from the UAE to Singapore show many states sustaining a high comfort level with mutually beneficial economic migration,” says Dr. Parag Khanna, founder and managing partner of FutureMap in Singapore.
Historical data shows that in 2006, a citizen could travel to 58 destinations on average without needing a visa from the host nation. By the end of 2018, this number had risen to 107. The Henley Passport Index is updated in real-time, and is updated when visa-policy changes come into effect. You can get further information on it here.
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