Singapore now has the world’s most ‘powerful passport’: Index
Singapore now has the world’s “most powerful” passport, because it allows its citizens to travel to the greatest number of countries visa-free, according to Arton Capital, which compiles the so-called Global Passport Index.
The ability to travel without the encumbrance of visas matters to individuals who travel frequently, such as business executives, and who are in a position to choose the passports they carry.
According to the Passport Index website, Singapore moved to the top of the “power” list, nudging Germany into second place, after Paraguay eased its visa requirement for Singaporean passport holders.
Singapore’s approximately 5.4m passport holders can now travel to 159 countries, either without a visa, or by having one issued for them on arrival, the Arton Capital research reveals.
Second place Germany’s citizens are able to visit 158 countries without a visa, while Sweden and South Korea tied for third, with a “Passport Power Score” of 157, and Denmark was in fifth place with a score of 156.
Arton Capital evaluates the “power” of the world’s passports in real time based on how the various countries’ passports are regarded by other nations around the world, with respect to whether visas are required or not.
Philippe May, managing director of Arton Capital’s Singapore office, said Singapore’s high ranking on the list was a testament to its “inclusive diplomatic relations and effective foreign policy”.
US passport’s ‘power’ falling
One passport that has been slipping in the rankings, the Arton researcher shows, is America’s, which is tied with three other countries in sixth place on the list this year, alongside Malaysia, Ireland and Canada. This is said to reflect a perceived decline in the passport’s usefulness since President Donald Trump took office, and countries such as Turkey and the Central African Republic revoking visa-free entry to holders of the American document.
Holding last place on the list is Afghanistan, the citizens of which enjoy visa-free access to just 22 countries, according to Arton.
Other passports that might not be ideal for those who need to travel widely, according to the Passport Index, include Pakistan, whose citizens need visas to enter all but 25 other countries; Iraq, whose citizens need 26, Syria, with a need for visas in all but 30; and Bangladesh, with a need for visas in all but 35.