World’s most powerful passports revealed – how did yours rank?

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The world’s most powerful passports have been revealed in a new ranking.

Japan and Singapore claimed joint top spot in the latest edition of the Henley Passport Index, released by London based global citizenship and residence advisory firm Henley & Partners.

The index is a ranking of all the passports in the world based on the number of countries their holders can travel to without needing to secure a visa in advance.

According to the index, Japanese and Singaporean passport holders can, in theory, each access 192 of 199 countries included in the report visa free or by getting a visa on arrival.

However, in practice the actual figure may be lower as the index does not take into account restrictions and travel bans imposed during the pandemic.

The index, which uses data from the International Air Transport Association (IATA), ranked South Korea and Germany in second place whose citizens can each visit 190 countries visa free.

Finland, Italy, Luxembourg and Spain were jointly ranked in third place (189 countries), while Austria, Denmark, France, the Netherlands and Sweden were in fourth place (188 countries).

Ireland and Portugal tied in fifth (187 countries).

“Passports and visas are among the most important instruments impacting on social inequality worldwide as they determine opportunities for global mobility,” Christian H. Kaelin, chair of Henley & Partners and creator of the passport index concept, said in the latest report.

“The borders within which we happen to be born, and the documents we are entitled to hold, are no less arbitrary than our skin colour.

“Wealthier states need to encourage positive inward migration in an effort to help redistribute and rebalance human and material resources worldwide.”

Most powerful passports
Japan, Singapore (192)
Germany, South Korea (190)
Finland, Italy, Luxembourg, Spain (189)
Austria, Denmark, France, Netherlands, Sweden (188)
Ireland, Portugal (187)
Belgium, New Zealand, Norway, Switzerland, United Kingdom, United States (186)
Australia, Canada, Czech Republic, Greece, Malta (185)
Poland, Hungary (183)
Lithuania, Slovakia (182)
Estonia, Latvia, Slovenia (181)

Thailand (79)

Least powerful passports
Sudan, Sri Lanka, Lebanon (41)
Libya, Kosovo, Bangladesh (40)
North Korea (39)
Nepal, Palestinian territories (37)
Somalia (34)
Yemen (33)
Pakistan (31)
Syria (29)
Iraq (28)
Afghanistan (26)