Asia Pacific Reigns in 2021 Henley Passport Index as Region Looks Set to Emerge First from Pandemic

Asia Pacific Reigns in 2021 Henley Passport Index as Region Looks Set to Emerge First from Pandemic

05.01.2021: As 2021 commences, the latest results from the Henley Passport Index — the original ranking of all the world’s passports according to the number of destinations their holders can access without a prior visa — provide fascinating insights into the future o

As 2021 commences, the latest results from the Henley Passport Index — the original ranking of all the world’s passports according to the number of destinations their holders can access without a prior visa — provide fascinating insights into the future of travel freedom in a world that has been transformed by the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic.


Without taking temporary restrictions into account, Japan continues to hold the number one position on the index, with passport holders able to access 191 destinations around the world visa-free. This marks the third consecutive year that Japan has held the top spot, either alone or jointly with Singapore.



Asia Pacific (APAC) region countries’ dominance of the index — which is based on exclusive data from the International Air Transport Association (IATA) — now seems firmly established. Singapore sits in 2nd position, with access to 190 destinations, and South Korea holds onto 3rd place alongside Germany, with both having a visa-free/visa-on-arrival score of 189.


Slightly further down but still in the top 10, New Zealand is in 7th position, with visa-free access to 185 destinations, while Australia is in 8th position, with access to 184 destinations.



The ascendance of APAC countries in the Henley Passport Index rankings is a relatively new phenomenon. Over the index’s 16-year history, the top spots were traditionally held by EU countries, the UK, or the US, and experts suggest that the APAC region’s position of strength will continue as it includes some of the first countries to begin the process of recovering from the pandemic.



With the US and the UK still facing significant challenges related to the virus, and the passport strength of both countries continuing to steadily erode, the balance of power is shifting. Over the past seven years, the US passport has fallen from the number one spot to 7th place, a position it currently shares with the UK.



Due to pandemic-related travel constraints, travelers from both the UK and the US currently face major restrictions from over 105 countries, with US passport holders able to travel to fewer than 75 destinations, while UK passport holders currently have access to fewer than 70.



Dr. Christian H. Kaelin, Chairman of leading residence and citizenship advisory firm Henley & Partners and the inventor of the passport index concept, says that the latest ranking provides an opportunity to reflect on the extraordinary upheaval that characterized 2020.


“Just a year ago all indications were that the rates of global mobility would continue to rise, that travel freedom would increase, and that holders of powerful passports would enjoy more access than ever before. The global lockdown negated these glowing projections, and as restrictions begin to lift, the results from the latest index are a reminder of what passport power really means in a world upended by the pandemic.”


With the first Covid-19 vaccine approved just over a month ago, airline industry experts believe that mandatory vaccination before air travel may soon be a necessity.



A technological innovation scheduled to launch in Q1 2021 that will contribute to restoring global mobility is IATA’s Travel Pass initiative — a mobile application that enables travelers to store and manage their verified certifications for Covid-19 tests or vaccines.




The great reset gives way to the next great migration



Experts suggest that in terms of future global mobility, we cannot expect a return to pre-pandemic patterns. Dr. Parag Khanna, bestselling author (The Future Is Asian) and the Founder and Managing Partner of FutureMap in Singapore says that the system will not simply revert to what it was, and that nationality alone will no longer suffice to guarantee safe passage.



“Even for still-powerful passports such as Japan, Singapore, South Korea, and members of the EU, additional protocols will be required to re-attain relatively frictionless mobility.”



Looking further ahead, Khanna suggests that demographic shifts are likely to usher in far more dramatic changes: “Today’s youth are socially conscious, environmentally aware, and less nationalistic — all of which makes them potentially the most mobile generation in human history. They herald a seminal shift in mobility from being every country for itself to being every person for themself.”



More key developments like this one are discussed in the Global Mobility Report 2021 Q1 released by Henley & Partners today. The report, which features cutting-edge analysis and commentary from leading academics and professional experts, shows that while the pandemic may have temporarily restricted transnational movement, the urge to move and migrate remains, with people turning to creative solutions to protect their global privileges in the post-Covid era.



Commenting on the growing trend towards the acquisition of second citizenships, Professor Peter J. Spiro, Charles Weiner Professor of Law at Temple University Law School, says that the pandemic “proved the first major blow to the post-globalization system of mobility”, and that this will “ultimately accelerate pre-existing trends towards citizenship acquisition as transnational elites look to insure against future shock events”.



The Global Mobility Report 2021 Q1 also highlights new research by Deep Knowledge Group, overlaying data from the Covid-19 Risk and Safety Assessment of the economic, social, and health stability of 250 countries and regions with the latest Henley Passport Index results.



What emerges is that for developed and developing nations alike, travel freedom is currently not only the result of a lack of social freedom or poor economic development but also a failure of risk management, health readiness, and monitoring and detection. In other words, global immobility is no longer solely the plight of citizens of less advanced countries.



Discussing the pandemic’s impact on talent migration, Greg Lindsay, Director of Applied Research at NewCities, points to the rise of the so-called ‘digital nomads’. “The moniker now effectively describes anyone with a Covid-induced mandate to work from anywhere — and thousands, if not millions, are pursuing pandemic arbitrage in their choice of destinations.



The evidence is clear, including record numbers of Americans seeking secondary citizenship in 2020, and Britons rushing to secure EU access ahead of Brexit.”




New alliances and a changing Middle East



Perhaps understandably, there were relatively few high-profile visa agreements between countries during 2020. The notable exception was the UAE, which has continued its remarkable upward trajectory on the Henley Passport Index.



The country signed several mutually reciprocated visa-waiver agreements last year, including a landmark US-brokered agreement establishing formal ties with Israel and granting citizens of each country visa-free access to the other.


 The UAE now has a visa-free/visa-on-arrival score of 173 and holds 16th spot on the ranking. This is a stunning ascent when compared to the position it held at the index’s inception in 2006, when the country ranked 62nd, with a visa-free/visa-on-arrival score of just 35.


Commenting in the Global Mobility Report 2021 Q1 on these developments, Dr. Robert Mogielnicki, Resident Scholar at the Arab Gulf States Institute in Washington, says they could pave the way for further significant changes in the region: “A strong technology focus weaves together the economic agreements and memorandums of understanding that emerged in the wake of the UAE–Israel normalization agreement.



Sudan normalized relations with Israel in October 2020, and other Arab countries may take similar steps over the coming months.”




Investment migration: An essential insurance policy



Amid these dynamic shifts, the appeal of investment migration remains constant, with countries offering residence and citizenship programs continuing to fare extremely well on the index. Henley & Partners’ CEO Dr. Juerg Steffen says that the volatility driven by Covid-19 has pushed the steadily growing appeal of investment migration into overdrive.


“More than being associated with simple ease of travel or acquiring a vacation home, alternative residence and citizenship are now also perceived in terms of their remarkable potential for portfolio diversification, access to global investment and operations, and the creation of a new inheritance and identity for the family.


The unexpected and unprecedented events of 2020 have simultaneously exacerbated push factors such as political and economic instability, and reprioritized pull factors, with stability, safety, and access to quality education and healthcare becoming issues of greater concern than ever before.



Investment migration is now a standard consideration for international families and entrepreneurs who are looking to hedge volatility and create long-term value through enhanced global mobility.”



Read the full Global Mobility Report 2021 Q1





Sarah Nicklin- photo Henley



Permanent-URL: http://www.automobilsport.com/asia-pacific-region-henley-passport-index-region-emerge-first-pandemic---217871.html

05.01.2021 / MaP

More News

Ultra-lightweight intelligent wheelchair receives $1M as winner of Mobility Unlimited Challenge is announced
17.12.2020
    Toyota Mobility Foundation, in partnership with Nesta Challenges, announces winner of $4 million global Mobility Unlimited Challenge in virtual eventphoto caption:  The Mobility Unlimited Challenge - winner Phoenix Instinct, from left to r more >>
Goodyear Innovation Challenge inspires students to build future mobility
08.12.2020
A collaboration between The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company’s Akron Innovation Lab and Case Western Reserve University offers college and graduate students an opportunity to design the future via a virtual competition focused on the mobility ecosystem. more >>
Toyota announces the launch of KINTO Europe - a new mobility services company for the region
08.12.2020
      KINTO Europe, a joint venture between Toyota Motor Europe (TME) and Toyota Financial Services (TFS) to open in April 2021, based in Cologne    New business will manage KINTO mobility services across the region, supporti more >>
The Growth of E-Mobility in India With Sohinder Gill, Hero Electric's CEO
26.11.2020
Just last year, the conversation around electrification in India just got louder by a few decibels. The reason – the introduction of a piece of legislation that had, for the first time piqued everyone’s interest, end customers included. But, right from the moment it was launched, FAME II divided opinion. more >>
Groupe Renault creates the first European factory dedicated to the circular economy of mobility
26.11.2020
The Re-FACTORY Flins: Europe’s leading circular economy factory dedicated to mobility with a target for a negative CO2 balance by 2030*    A competitive industrial model for sustainable mobility based on the potential for value creation generated by the vehicle throughout its life.    An objective for more tha more >>
3D printing opportunities for mobility
19.11.2020
Sustainable, fast and innovative – parts from additive manufacturing are gaining ground in mobility and logistics. Stefanie Brickwede from Mobility goes Additive e.V. explains the areas in which 3D printing has already ma more >>
SEAT aims to contribute to designing zero-emission cities
17.11.2020
    SEAT participates in the Smart City Live 2020, the annual meeting on the future and trends in city mobility    SEAT’s micromobility makes it to Greece thanks to the Volkswagen Group’s project to transform mobility on the Greek island of Astypalea    Since its launch three months ago in more >>
Seat MÓ - A day of MÓtosharing
16.11.2020
    Motosharing is drawing users in major cities of the world, with services such as the one offered by SEAT MÓ    SEAT MÓtosharing has a fleet of 632 100% electric scooters in the city of Barcelona    It offers affordable, shared, noiseless, zero-emission mobility equivalent to 125 cc with three differen more >>
SEAT at Smart City Live 2020: connecting with the future of mobility
12.11.2020
    SEAT’s live broadcast takes place on Tuesday 17th November at 4:20 pm CEST    SEAT MÓ director Lucas Casasnovas will analyse future urban mobility trends and the company’s strategy in this field    Pre-registration now available at: https: more >>
The all−electric SEAT MÓ eScooter 125 hits the market
29.10.2020
    SEAT’s first all-electric scooter delivers efficient convenience, fun to drive dynamics and zero emissions at the tailpipe       The SEAT MÓ eScooter 125’s design stands out with sh more >>
Shared mobility segment to stage strong comeback post COVID-19 in India, says GlobalData
26.10.2020
Following the news that Uber plans to launch services in more cities and expand its Auto and Moto offerings across existing markets in India;Animesh Kumar, Director of Automotive and Travel & Tourism Consulting at GlobalData, a leading research and co more >>
First of its kind and innovation driver for sustainable mobility: 200 000 BMW i3 produced to date.
16.10.2020
Production anniversary at the BMW Group plant in Leipzig - The first purely electrically powered large-scale serial production model of the BMW Group is still enjoying strong demand even after almost seven years of production.The BM more >>
RENAULT EWAYS: The electric mobility of today and tomorrow presentation
15.10.2020
    Today, Thursday 15 October 2020, Luca de Meo, CEO of Groupe Renault, will inaugurate «Renault eWays» and unveil Groupe Renault’s 100% electric and hybrid innovations at a digital press conference at 5 pm (Paris time).  more >>
BMW Charging and MINI Charging: expanded charging options for Gen5 market launch
14.10.2020
Individual charging options, with nationwide access to charging infrastructure and innovative digital services, consolidate BMW Group’s leading role in premium electromobility segmentBMW Charging and MINI Charging are ex more >>
Hypermobility Conference coming to South Africa in November
05.10.2020
Messe Frankfurt South Africa is partnering with the National Association of Automobile Manufacturers of SA (naamsa) to probe the way forward for the local and global motor industry in a fully virtual engagement session on Wednesday, 18 November 2020. more >>
eMove360 Hybrid 2020 in October - Battery Conference - Get your Tickets now!
16.09.2020
  eMove360° Hybrid 2020 - Conference & Exhibition, October 20 – 22, 2020 at the Kohlebunker, MotorWorld, in Munich. Save your booth and speaker slot. eMove360° Battery Conference    October 20 -21, 2020 more >>
SEAT: 70 years reinventing mobility
09.09.2020
    Since the launch of the SEAT 600 in 1957, SEAT has set standards in urban mobility       SEAT's social influence was so deep that the ‘60s were known as “the Spain of 600” &nb more >>
SHIFT Mobility 2020 in Berlin - Hydrogen as propulsion? Hyundai discusses emission−free mobility
03.09.2020
    Hyundai Hydrogen strategy at SHIFT Mobility, digital panel via streamCar manufacturer presents digital panel on the hydrogen strategy in Europe at SHIFT Mobility on 3 September 2020 / attending among others Senior Vice more >>
WeAllMove: Mobility as a collaborative effort
27.08.2020
For many years, the mobility industry has been calling for stronger cooperative approaches to joint mobility solutions in cities. The corona crisis has now accelerated this cooperation, as the platform #WeAllMove by the mobility tech start-up Wunder Mobility shows.Nobody needed t more >>
Immense and HERE Technologies: Driving Future Transport Solutions
27.08.2020
Following Immense Simulation’s product launch in June, the leading UK scale-up is partnering with HERE Technologies, the world’s number one location platform to change the way businesses move.The two transport insights specialists are more >>
SEAT MÓ rolls out its motosharing service in Barcelona
27.08.2020
    SEAT MÓ has 632 fully electric eScooters in Barcelona       It also offers an all-inclusive motorbike and kickscooter subscription service with no time commitment &nbs more >>
StarRides Launches in Third City, Offering Premium Ride−Hailing Service in Chengdu
25.08.2020
    StarRides officially launches in Chengdu, its third city in China following Hangzhou and Guangzhou    Premium ride-hailing service registers a growth rate of almost 80 percent on a monthly basis for registered users    StarRides offers a premium chauffeur service with a new fleet of Mercedes-Benz more >>
Successful spin-off from Porsche Digital: Start-up “&Charge” promotes electric mobility
21.08.2020
With "&Charge", Porsche Digital has successfully spun off its own company in the field of e-mobility, thereby expanding its digital business portfolio. "&Charge" offers a digital platform through which users can obtain credit for their online purchases for electric mobility. The start-up, which is based in Frankfurt am Main in Germany, thus offers the first loyalty program for e-mobilit more >>
Mobility revolution after corona: 5 questions to Carlo Ratti
19.08.2020
Since the corona lockdown, public transport and sharing services in particular have lost users, while at the same time the car is celebrating its return to the urban streets. Carlo Ratti, architect, urban planner and director of the Senseable Lab at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), explains in an interview how the mobility revolution can nevertheless succeed. more >>
Immense Simulations: Now Powered by the World’s #1 Location Platform
11.08.2020
Two transport insights specialists are joining forces to provide an improved way for mobility providers to identify revenue opportunities, reduce costs and choose operating policies fit for the future.Leading transport simulation company Immense have more >>
Free2Move becomes a full-fledged company with a new offer of mobility services
30.07.2020
•    The mobility brand Free2Move becomes an autonomous, unified and agile entity•    Composed of 150 experts in tech, data, design and e-commerce •    Free2Move expands its offer and puts its technological expertise at the heart of its activity  more >>
MOVE America – Mobility Re-Imagined
23.07.2020
America’s most important mobility event will be moving online for the year 2020.Where disruptive technology and innovation drive much needed change, MOVE is a one of a kind event representing the entire ecosystem of urban mobility. Transport’s biggest di more >>
Kia establishes ‘Purple M’ start-up to accelerate EV mobility services
20.07.2020
    Kia and CODE42.ai jointly invest in new start-up, using proprietary operating system to manage mobility services    New start-up extends Kia’s footprint in growing Transportation as a Service (TaaS) sector    Kia pursuing new business opportunities based on EV mobility more >>
What Are The Main Challenges For Fleet Operators?
22.06.2020
All over the world, large enterprises are operating thousands of vehicles and managing drivers across cities, states, and even countries. As you can imagine, this makes it incredibly difficult to manage, creating a wide range of unique challenges within fleet management.Flee more >>
ITS expert questions the future of MaaS - with video
16.06.2020
One of the UK's leading transport technology experts says the transport community must reconsider all it's been planning for Mobility as a Service and shared mobility in the light of the Coronavirus crisis. VIDEO HERE more >>
Volkswagen rolls out ID. Charger -Wallbox for everyone
13.06.2020
E-mobility Board Member Thomas Ulbrich and the Volkswagen ID. Charger  Wallbox can be ordered online and from Volkswagen dealers, first boxes have already been delivered   Introductory price from €399: ID. Charger and install more >>
Interview with Pieter Nota on the BMW Group’s plug-in hybrid vehicles
10.06.2020
In an interview, Pieter Nota, Member of the Board of Management of BMW AG, Customer, Brands, Sales, talks about the advantages of the plug-in hybrid, the technology’s future and about what he expects from legislators. Because he is sure: “Our plug-in hybrids combine the best of two worlds.”  more >>
Trans-European Transport Network (TEN-T)
09.06.2020
EU Commission welcomes provisional agreement simplifying administrative proceduresThe European Commission welcomes the provisional agreement reached by Parliament and Council yesterday on measures speeding up the completion of the trans-Europea more >>
EU Commission opens applications for the 11th edition of the Access City Award
09.06.2020
Today, the Commission has launched the contest of the 11th Access City Award. Cities across the EU can start applying now. This award recognises and celebrates a city's willingness, ability and efforts to become more accessible for persons with disabilities.   Accessible c more >>
SKODA AUTO DigiLab hosts online ‘COVID Mobility Race’ hackathon to benefit the automotive industry
08.06.2020
› International hackathon of ŠKODA AUTO DigiLab and ŠKODA AUTO held online for the first time, under the theme ‘COVID Mobility Race’› 52 teams from 19 countries worked on innovative digital solutions for more >>
Hyundai celebrates 30 years of innovations in eco-mobility
05.06.2020
    Hyundai has been at the forefront of the development of eco-friendly vehicles for 30 years    Following its early experiments with EVs in the 1990s and FCEVs in the 2000s, Hyundai became one of the first manufacturers to start mass producing alternative powertrain vehicles    Today, Hyundai vehicl more >>
BMW Executives to speak at MOVE Virtual Asia – Mobility Reimagined
01.06.2020
BMW Asia is excited to announce that senior executives from BMW Asia, BMW Financial Services, Asia Pacific and BMW AG will be speaking at MOVE Virtual Asia 2020 – a series of live virtual panel discussions on top mobility topics such as Energy & Chargin more >>
FCA-ENGIE EPS begin work on vehicle-to-grid pilot project
20.05.2020
The COVID-19 outbreak has not put a stop to the cooperation between Fiat Chrysler Automobiles and ENGIE Eps, nor to their commitment to support the deployment of electric mobility.   Since the announcement with Terna in September of the intention to jo more >>
SKODA Scooter offers sustainable mobility for the last mile
19.05.2020
› Practical and environmentally friendly scooter for mobility in cities› Patented folding mechanism as a Simply Clever feature› Easy to stow under the boot floor of the ŠKODA KAMIQ and SCALAMicr more >>
2001-2021 copyright automobilsport.com