Czech Passport Is the Ninth Most Powerful in the World in 2020

“We have the ninth most powerful passport in the world! This is a great success. The strength of our passport is measured by how many countries we can travel to visa-free. With our passports, this is possible in 183 countries – an excellent score for our country!” commented Tomáš Petříček, Czech Minister of Foreign Affairs, on Twitter on Tuesday. Photo: KK / Brno Daily.

Czech Rep., Jan 9 (BD) – The latest passport power scores from the Henley Passport Index are out. Asia has emerged as the winner, while European countries have slipped down the rankings. For the third year in a row, Japan (191 countries visa-free/visa-on-arrival) came top of the most powerful passport ladder. Singapore (190) came second, while South Korea dropped one place to third, equal with Germany, enabling their passport holders visa-free/visa-on-arrival access to 189 countries worldwide.

Both the US and the UK have been on a downward trajectory in the ratings this year. Their current shared eighth place is a tangible decline from the top spot they shared five years ago. 

Finland and Italy (188) placed fourth in the 2020 index, with Denmark, Luxembourg, and Spain (187) together in fifth.

Top 5 Passports in 2020# of Visa-free/ Visa-on-arrival Access Countries
1. Japan 191
2. Singapore 
3. South Korea and Germany 189
4. Italy and Finland 188
5. Spain, Luxembourg, and Denmark187

Top 5 Passports in 2020 from the Henley Passport Index report.

The Czech Republic ranked jointly with New Zealand, Malta, Canada, and Australia in ninth place with access to 183 countries. Last year, the Czech Republic placed seventh, but the number of countries the passport can access is unchanged. The Czech Republic has been in the top ten of the index for the last five years.

The Henley Passport Index ranks “all the world’s passports according to the number of destinations their holders can access without a prior visa,” reads the official press release of Henley. The index is based on data from the International Air Transport Association (IATA). The latest edition of the index was released on January 7th, 2020.

The 2020 Henley Index report also mentions the widening of the global talent mobility gap, describing it as “the starkest since the index’s inception 15 years ago”, mentioning current anti-immigration political discourse that has led to real-life policies such as Brexit and differential tuition fees for foreign-born (non-European) students introduced in France from this academic year. 

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