Japan entered 2019 with the world's most powerful passport, revealing a new global ranking. Citizens of Japan can visit 190 countries around the world visa-free. The Singaporean and South Korean passports are in a shared second place in 189 countries. However, both the UK and the US passports fell by fifth in 2018 and are now in sixth place in 185 countries.

Japan entered 2019 with the world's most powerful passport, unveiled a new global ranking The ranking was produced by the Henley Passport Index, which is based on data from the International Air Transport Association (IATA). It analyzes how many countries a visa holder visa-free or visa can enter on arrival. The German and French passports remain in third place until 2019 with a visa-free score of 188. Fourthly, the passports of Denmark, Finland, Italy and Sweden are in 187 countries, followed by Luxembourg and Spain in 186 countries. The UK and the US share sixth with the Austrian, Dutch, Norwegian, Portuguese and Swiss passports. The Henley Passport Index said that sixth place was a significant decline for the UK and US passports, as both had the best place in 2015. And it added that it is unlikely that both countries will soon recover the top position. Predicting the future status of the UK is particularly difficult because the image is clouded by the Brexit. The rest of the top 10 consists of Belgium, Canada, Greece and Ireland in seventh place, Czech Republic in eighth place, Malta in ninth and Australia, Iceland and New Zealand in 10th place. The Henley Passport index also selected several countries that have shot up the rankings of recent years.

Both British and American passports have been pushed down and both are now in sixth place. In 2015, both were in first place. They include China, which ranked 85th in 2017, with citizens who had access to only 51 destinations. China is now 69th in 2019 and has access to 74 countries around the world. the United Arab Emirates continue their upward trajectory and now have the top position in the Middle East and 22nd place worldwide. In 2018, countries with programs for citizenship-for-investment (CBI) remain their strong position on the index. Malta is in ninth place, with access to 182 destinations and St Kitts and Nevis and Antigua and Barbuda 27 and 28 respectively. Moldova is still in a 46th position, with citizens having access to 122 countries. At the bottom of the table, the world's least powerful passport is that of Afghanistan, as citizens only have access to 30 countries.

The ranking showed that the least powerful passport of the world is that of Afghanistan, since citizens only have access to 30 countries. Syrian and Somali passports are also fairly poor with access to only 32 destinations, as is the Pakistani passport with visa-free travel to 33 countries. Dr. Christian H. Kälin, group chairman of Henley & Partners, says despite the increasing isolationist sentiments in some parts of the world, most countries continue to work for cooperation and mutually beneficial agreements. He explained: "Historical data from the Henley Passport index over the past 14 years shows an overwhelming global trend towards visa openness. "In 2006 a citizen was able to travel an average of 58 destinations without needing a visa from the host country, by the end of 2018 this number had almost doubled to 107. THE TOP 10 MOST POWERFUL PASSPORTS IN THE WORLD 1 – Japan2 – Singapore, South Korea3 – France, Germany4 – Denmark, Finland, Italy, Sweden5 – Luxembourg, Spain6 – Austria, Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Switzerland, UK, USA 7 – Belgium, Canada, Greece, Ireland8 – Czech Republic9 – Malta10- Australia, Iceland, New Zealand Source: Henley Passport index