Singapore passport ranks No. 4 in the world, top in Asia for visa-free access

Singapore is now the highest-ranked Asian nation, breaking a tie with fifth-placed Japan (172), which has lost visa-free access to one country.
Singapore is now the highest-ranked Asian nation, breaking a tie with fifth-placed Japan (172), which has lost visa-free access to one country. ST PHOTO: SEAH KWANG PENG

SINGAPORE - The Singapore passport continues to be widely accepted globally, reaching its highest ranking at No. 4 on this year's Henley & Partners Visa Restrictions Index against a global trend of decreased travel freedom.

The number of countries and territories that Singapore passport holders enjoy visa-free access to has remained unchanged from last year at 173, putting the Republic level with seven other countries including the United Kingdom and France.

Singapore is now the highest-ranked Asian nation, breaking a tie with fifth-placed Japan (172), which has lost visa-free access to one country.

Germany (176) and Sweden (175) retained their first and second positions respectively from last year, although both also lost visa-free access to one country.

The Republic moved up the ranks as the majority of countries in the top five have lost visa-free access to one or two countries.

 

The bottom three of Pakistan (28), Iraq (27) and Afghanistan (24) was unchanged but all three also saw their visa-free number fall from last year.

"We have witnessed several major events recently that are likely to have an impact on global mobility - including Brexit and the election of US President Donald Trump," said Henley & Partners chairman Christian Kälin.

"This trend towards curbing travel freedom is already apparent in the shift in rankings on this year's Visa Restrictions Index."

The index, produced with the International Air Transport Association, considers 219 countries and territories.

Another global passport index placed Singapore second in January, with Germany again coming up tops.

 

Arton Capital's Passport Index looked at 193 UN member countries and six territories. The scores are calculated differently from the Visa Restrictions Index, with the Passport Index also considering countries where passport-holders can obtain a visa upon arrival.