Singapore has been judged as having one of the world’s most powerful passports, alongside Japan and South Korea. In Southeast Asia, it is the best performer in the region, with Malaysia and Brunei trailing close behind.
In May last year, the Singapore passport dropped to second place when the Japanese led the race. However, in July, it bounced back to the No. 1 slot, but slipped a notch again in October and January.
Today, it recouped the most coveted spot in the recent Henley Passport Index update.
Following closely behind is Germany with a score of 188, in second place, after it received a visa-exemption from Uzbekistan. The country previously shared third place with France.
Denmark, Finland, France, Italy and Sweden are sharing the 3rd place with a score of 187. Luxembourg and Spain came in 4th, then Britain as 5th, and the United States 6th. Both countries last held joint top spot in 2015.
“With some notable exceptions, there is a growing acknowledgment that policies of engagement, collaboration, and openness yield the greatest results, for both individual nations and the global community as a whole. The current strength of Asian passports is emblematic of this progressive shift, and it seems certain that more and more countries will follow suit in order to benefit from global flows of talent and capital,” Henley & Partners Chairman Dr. Christian H. Kälin commented as he attributes Asia’s dominance on the index to a worldwide shift towards more open policies.
Henley & Partners noted that the Brexit process has not yet had a marked effect on Britain’s standing on the index. Its fall from the third place it held in 2016 is a result of gains made by Asian countries, rather than as a direct consequence of Brexit.
Henley & Partners Singapore managing partner Dominic Volek commented, “A snapshot at the index’s top 20 today compared to what it was 20 years ago, tells an interesting story. European countries dominated the index then and were immovable. But today’s top 20 has seen significant movements especially in the last several years. The European countries have been surely but steadily dropping down the ranks as Asian countries improve to take their place.”
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