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Japanese passports are the most powerful in the world, new report shows

Japanese passports are once again ranked as “the most powerful in the world”. However, the Japanese themselves seem less interested in taking advantage of this.

According to the annual survey of Henley & Partners, a global resident and citizenship consultancy firm, Japanese passports are considered the strongest in the world for the second time now.

Singapore ranked first together with Japan. Countries in Europe, North America and East Asia top the list. USA and UK ranked 15th.

Henley & Partners reviewed passports issued by 199 countries and regions, ranking them according to the number of foreign destinations their owners can go without a visa. As of October, Japanese passport holders can travel to 190 countries and regions with visa-free status, or by applying for a visa upon arrival.

However, Japanese people show that they are less interested in traveling abroad. The number of Japanese students studying abroad has dropped from the peak, according to data from the Japan Association of Overseas Studies. Observers said that relatively few Japanese work for international organizations, compared to the country’s economic size and population.

According to the Nikkei Asian Review , because Japanese passports are often trusted, holders can usually complete entry procedures more smoothly than those from elsewhere. Japanese people can travel to 190 countries and territories without a visa. However, Japan only has a visa-free program with 68 places, including the US, UK, Germany , France and South Korea .

The Japanese can get a warm welcome in some parts of the world just by showing their travel documents – an obvious benefit of having the most powerful passport in the world. However, many Japanese do not seem interested in traveling abroad. Only 23% of people own a passport – a sign that the country is becoming more introverted in an era of globalization.

In the U.S., the proportion of passport holders has increased by 17 percentage points in the past 12 years, to about 44% in 2019, according to data from the Census Bureau and the State Department. Meanwhile, the proportion of Japanese with a passport is the lowest among the seven major industrial countries (G7).

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