Japan, Singapore, South Korea lead passport freedom

Japan, Singapore, South Korea lead passport freedom

ASEAN’s visa free access to member-countries stands at 40% on average.

For the past few years, Japan, Singapore, and South Korea have held the top spots in the Henley Passport Index, highlighting the substantial benefits that come with holding a powerful passport, according to Dominic Volek, Group Head of Private Clients at Henley & Partners.

The Henley Passport Index evaluates global passports based on the number of destinations their holders can access without a prior visa. 

"These leading countries provide their citizens with significant travel freedom, which in turn opens up numerous global opportunities, whether for business or lifestyle," Volek explained.

This advantage has positioned Japan, Singapore, and South Korea as models of how strategic diplomacy and international relations can enhance the global mobility of a nation's citizens.

Volek pointed out, "It's about access and the ability to move around the world effortlessly, entering markets that might be strategic for business." 

For international businesspersons, a passport that facilitates easy entry to key markets such as Europe or China can be a game-changer, making it easier to leverage opportunities that arise across the globe.

Investment migration emerges as a pivotal strategy for individuals seeking to enhance their global mobility and access. Through government-regulated investment programs, individuals from countries with lower-ranking passports can acquire a second or alternative passport. 

"Citizenship by investment allows you to get a passport with greater travel freedom and visa-free access to key markets, which your original passport may not provide," Volek stated.

He said that by investing in countries with more powerful passports, they can acquire citizenship that offers broader travel freedoms, thereby circumventing the limitations of their original passports. 

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