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According to the Henley Passport Index for CNN, the Japanese passport is now the most powerful passport in the world.
Having acquired visa-free access to Myanmar earlier this October, the Japanese can now enjoy visa-free or visa-on-arrival access to a massive 190 locations around the world – knocking off Singapore to second place with 189 destinations.
Germany, which began 2018 at the lead, is now in third with 188 locations. They are tied with South Korea and France.
On October 5th of this year, Uzbekistan lifted visa requirements for French nationals, and also approved visa-free access to Japanese and Singaporean citizens in early February.
South Korea acquired visa-free access to Myanmar on October 1st, while Paraguay removed visa requirements for Singaporean passport holders in 2017.
The other not-so-powerful
The UK and the United States, both of whom have visa-free or visa-on-arrival access to 186 destinations, are in fifth place. With neither having actually acquired entry to any brand-new jurisdictions this year, it seems unlikely that they’ll recover their number one spot that they held in 2015 any time soon.
Russia, on the other hand, has actually fallen to 47th position, in spite of having received a boost in September when Taiwan announced a visa-waiver for Russian nationals.
The UAE is the decade’s biggest success story when it comes to travel freedom and climbing up the passport power ladder. It has risen from 62nd place in 2006 to now being 21st in the rankings.
In addition, the UAE also recently signed a visa-waiver contract with Russia that’s due to come into effect in the coming months.
China recently acquired access to St. Lucia and Myanmar and is now in 71st place having actually climbed 14 locations since the start of 2017.
Henley & Partners, who compiled this report, commented in a statement on “the extraordinary results that states can achieve when they work hand in hand with their global peers to build a more interconnected and collaborative world.
Their Group Chairman, Christian H. Kälin, added, “China and the UAE exemplify this kind of progress, with both states among the highest overall climbers compared to 2017, purely as a result of the strong relationships they have built with partner countries around the world.”
The Henley Passport Index Power Ranking List
1. Japan: 190
2. Singapore: 189
3. Germany, France, South Korea: 188
4. Denmark, Finland, Italy, Sweden, Spain: 187
5. Norway, United Kingdom, Austria, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Portugal, United States: 186
6. Belgium, Switzerland, Ireland, Canada: 185
7. Australia, Greece, Malta: 183
8. New Zealand, Czech Republic: 182
9. Iceland: 181
10. Hungary, Slovenia, Malaysia: 180
Which passports offer the least movement?
According to this Henley Passport Index list, they are Afghanistan and Iraq, with visa-free or visa-on-arrival access to only 30 jurisdictions, followed by Syrian and Somalian passports which have only access to 32 jurisdictions, and Pakistan at 33.