HOTELS & TOURISM | Staff Reporter, Singapore

Asian countries perform strongly in global passport index

Singapore is the region’s best-performing passport with visa-free access to 176 countries.

Countries in Asia are opening their borders more and more as they move up the rankings in the latest edition of the Henley Passport Index. 

Singapore remains the best-performing country in the region and second globally as its nationals can enjoy visa-free access to 176 countries.

The Japanese passport moved up two notches and is now ranked third globally along with Denmark, Finland, France, Italy, Norway, Sweden and UK who enjoy visa-free access to 175 countries.

South Korea also made it to the global top 10 to nab fifth place which it shares along with Ireland, Portugal and USA. 

With visa-free access to 166 countries, Malaysia ranks second in the region and 12th globally whilst Hong Kong moves up one place to snag the 21st spot globally. 

China similarly made big advances as it moves ten places to occupy the 75th spot with visa-free access to 60 countries. 

“Despite the world experiencing huge disparity in the levels of travel freedom between countries, and an growing tendency towards immigration-hostile policies, only a small minority of countries on the 2018 Henley Passport Index lost access. These findings reflect the fact that, while certain countries are tightening their borders, others are in fact becoming more migrant-friendly, as they seek to tap into the immense economic value that migration can bring,” said Henley & Partners Hong Kong Jennifer Lai.

Germany holds the most powerful passport for the fifth time in the row with visa-free access to 177 countries. 

The Henley Passport Index is an authoritative passport index which derives data from the International Air Transport Association.

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