Henley Passport Index Current Affairs - 2020

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Henley Passport Index launched

Recently, Henley Passport Index was launched. The index was launched based on the data collected from International Air Transport Association (IATA). Around 199 different passports and 227 different travel destinations were considered to launch the index.

The Index is based on the number of destinations their holders can access without visa.

Highlights

According to the index, Japan has the world’s strongest passport. Japan has been holding top rank position for the past 3 years. According to 2020 index, the citizens can access 191 destinations without the necessity of obtaining visa in advance.

Japan was followed by Singapore, Germany, South Korea at second, third and fourth places respectively. US and UK have been falling places for two year are now in eighth position.

India ranked closer to the bottom at rank 84.

History of performances

UAE was the historic performer of Henley Passport Index 2020. UAE has jumped 47 places in the past 10 years. It is currently at 47th position.

India was in Rank 71 as the index was released in 2006. Today Indian citizens can access only 60 destinations in the world without obtaining prior Visa.

Visa Free Destinations

There are 58 destinations in the world that does not require prior Visa. 20 of the 58 are in Africa, 11 in Asia.

There is no developed country or a major power in the world where Indians can travel without Visa. Serbia is the only European country where Indians are allowed to travel without visa.

What is Passport Index?

Passport index is an online tool that provides insights about visa-free travel option. The score also says how welcoming the countries are. The Passport index includes Visa-Frees score, World Openness score, Welcoming score and Global Mobility score. When these scores are high, passport index is also high and such a passport is said to be highly powerful.

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Henley Passport Index

The Henley Passport Index measures the access each country’s travel document affords. The Index is based on the data provided by the International Air Transport Authority (IATA) and covers 199 passports and 227 travel destinations.

Ranking of the Jurisdictions

The Rankings of the jurisdictions based on the rankings in the Henley Passport Index are:

  • Japan retained its top spot as the world’s most travel-friendly passport due to the document’s access to 190 jurisdictions.
  • South Korea and Singapore are at joint second position offering access to 189 jurisdictions.
  • China has jumped almost 20 places in just two years, from 85th in 2017 to 69th this year.
  • India jumped two positions from 81st in 2018 to 79th this year.
  • European Union member states along with Norway and the US occupy the places behind the top three nations in the rankings.
  • The rankings of the USA and UK have continued to drop.
  • The top 5 positions are held by Japan (190 countries), Singapore, South Korea (189), France, Germany (188), Denmark, Finland, Italy, Sweden (187), and Luxembourg, Spain (186)
  • The bottom 5 positions are held by Eritrea (38), Yemen (37), Pakistan (33), Somalia, Syria (32)and Afghanistan, Iraq (30).

Observations

Christian Kalin, Chairman of the Henley & Partners’ Group who is also the creator of the index notes that the ranking is a bright spot in an increasingly isolationist world.

Open-door policies have the potential to contribute billions to the global economy, as well as create significant employment opportunities around the world. The ascent in the rankings of South Korea and the United Arab Emirates are examples of what happens when countries take a proactive foreign affairs approach, an attitude which significantly benefits their citizens as well as the international community.

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