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Thu 26 Oct 2017 01:13 PM

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UAE passport remains most powerful in Middle East

Republic of Chad in Africa becomes the latest country to grant UAE citizens visa-free travel

UAE passport remains most powerful in Middle East

The UAE passport remains the most powerful in the Middle East, with Chad in Africa the latest country to grant citizens visa-free travel.

According to Arton Capital's latest ranking, the UAE passport is ranked 26th globally with a visa-free score of 126.

The list comes as the Republic of Chad announced on the sidelines of the 72nd session of the United Nations General Assembly in New York that UAE nationals will now be exempt from pre-visa entry requirement. Emiratis can enter Chad without a visa for up to 90 days per visit.

In the Gulf region, Kuwait was ranked the second most powerful passport to have with a visa-free score of 85, followed by Qatar (80), Bahrain (75), Oman (71) and Saudi Arabia (69).

Globally, Arton said that Paraguay's recent removal of visa requirements for Singaporeans propelled Singapore’s passport to the top of its Passport Index with a visa-free score of 159.

Conversely, the US passport has fallen down sincePresident Trump took office, Arton added. Most recently Turkey and the Central African Republic revoked their visa-free status to US passport holders.

Historically, the top 10 most powerful passports in the world were mostly European, with Germany having the lead for the past two years.

Since early 2017, the number one position was shared with Singapore, while other Asian passports in the top 20 now include those of South Korea, Japan and Malaysia.

Philippe May, managing director of Arton Capital’s Singapore office, said: “For the first time ever an Asian country has the most powerful passport in the world. It is a testament of Singapore’s inclusive diplomatic relations and effective foreign policy.”

The Passport Index ranks national passports by the cross-border access they bring, assigning a visa-free score according to the number of countries a passport holder can visit visa-free or with visa on arrival.

“Visa-free global mobility has become an important factor in today’s world,” said Armand Arton, founder and president of Arton Capital. “More and more people every year invest hundreds of thousands of dollars in a second passport to offer better opportunity and security for their families."

Top 10 Passport Power Ranking:

1. 159 – Singapore
2. 158 – Germany
3. 157 – Sweden, South Korea
4. 156 – Denmark, Finland, Italy, France, Spain, Norway, Japan, United Kingdom
5. 155 – Luxemburg, Switzerland, Netherlands, Belgium, Austria, Portugal
6. 154 – Malaysia, Ireland, Canada, United States of America
7. 153 – Australia, Greece, New Zealand
8. 152 – Malta, Czech Republic, Iceland
9. 150 – Hungary
10. 149 – Slovenia, Slovakia, Poland, Lithuania, Latvia

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