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Taiwan's passport ranked 31st strongest in world

Taiwanese passport also rated 9th strongest in Asia

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New Taiwan passport (foreground) placed over old passport. 

New Taiwan passport (foreground) placed over old passport.  (CNA photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — The latest passport index by British consulting firm Henley & Partners ranked Taiwan as having the 31st most powerful passport globally in terms of the number of countries that provide its holders visa-free access.

The Henley Passport Index ranks 199 passports based on the extent their holders can access 227 travel destinations without a prior visa. The company says it derives its data from the International Air Transport Association (IATA), which the firm says "maintains the world’s largest and most accurate database of travel information."

In the firm's third-quarter listing for 2023, Taiwan ranked 31st, with access to 144 countries, rising one spot from its ranking of 32nd in the second quarter. Since the index began in 2006, Taiwan has been ranked as low as 69th, in 2010, and as high as 24th, in 2014.

In Asia, Taiwan ranks ninth behind Japan, Singapore, South Korea, Malaysia, the United Arab Emirates, Hong Kong, Brunei, and Israel. Globally, Singapore took first place, with visa-exempt status for 192 countries, followed by Germany, Italy, and Spain, which tied for second.

Tied for the third spot were Austria, Finland, France, Japan, Luxembourg, South Korea, and Sweden; fourth place was shared by Denmark, Ireland, the Netherlands, and the U.K.; and tied for fifth place were Belgium, Czech Republic, Malta, New Zealand, Northway, Portugal, and Switzerland with access to 187 countries.

China, on the other hand, ranked 63rd, one slot behind Namibia and tied with Bolivia. Only 80 countries offer Chinese passport holders visa-free access.

The bottom three were Syria, Iraq, and Afghanistan at 101st, 102nd, and 103rd, respectively. Afghanistan passport holders only have visa-free access to 27 countries.