MONTREAL, 23 February 2018: South Korea joins Singapore at the top of the latest list of the world’s most powerful passports.
They both share the top spot having both achieved a score based mainly on the countries that offer their citizens visa-free entry.
European nations such as Germany and Sweden traditionally led the top list of passports that offer easy travel without the need to apply for a visa up until 2017.
“We are currently seeing not one, but two Asian countries with the most powerful passports in the world,” said Arton Capital founder and president, Armand Arton. “This is a testament to the increased global respect and trust Asian countries are commanding.”
The latest changes at the top were mainly driven by Uzbekistan granting visa-free access to South Korea and Singapore, as well as recent adjustments to visa policies in Somalia.
With South Korea’s visa-free score of 162, South Korean passport holders have access to many European, North American and Asian countries, including The United States of America, Canada, Russia and others.
Japan quietly moved up to second place in the Global Passport Power ranking with a visa-free score of 161.
Although tied with Germany, Japan has fewer visa-free waivers than Germany, which placed it fourth when each individual passport power ranking was considered.
The Passport Index gives equal scores to both visa-free and visa-on-arrival conditions that add up to make the country’s visa-free score.
The World Openness Score as measured by The Passport Index has never been higher and has passed the 19,000 mark for the first time. The World Openness Score monitors how frictionless global travel is and since its inception in 2014, it has gained over 1,000 points.
The Passport Index issues eye-catching certificates to top position holders. Referred to as “art pieces,” past certificates have been issued to Singapore, the United Arab Emirates, and others.