World's most powerful passports: Where does Canada rank on the list?

For the most part, Canadians are able to travel anywhere in the world without worrying about visa restrictions or mucky bureaucracy. Although the Canadian passport is a powerful tool for global mobility, it still isn’t the strongest in the world, according to a global survey.

READ MORE: How easy is it to travel with a Canadian passport?

Arton Capital, a financial firm released an updated ranking of the world’s most powerful passport. Canada tied for sixth place and even dropped one spot since 2016.

The United States passport also fell down a rank since Donald Trump took office, according to the survey.

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Singapore ranked number 1 on the list — the first time an Asian country has dominated the passport index. Germany ranked second and Sweden and South Korea tied for third place.

The ranking sorts countries based on the number of nations a passport holder can visit without a visa.

READ MORE: Canadian cities where people feel the most (and least) safe

For example, residents in Singapore do not need visas when travelling to Brazil or China but Canadians do.

Top 10 passports

1. Singapore

2. Germany

3. Sweden, South Korea

4. Denmark, Finland, Italy, France, Spain, Norway, Japan, United Kingdom

5. Luxemburg, Switzerland, Netherlands, Belgium, Austria, Portugal

6. Malaysia, Ireland, Canada, United States

7. Australia, Greece, New Zealand

8. Malta, Czech Republic, Iceland

9. Hungary

10. Slovenia, Slovakia, Poland, Lithuania, Latvia

Least powerful passport

1. Afghanistan

2. Pakistan, Iraq

3. Syria

4. Somalia

5. Bangladesh, Yemen

6. Sri Lanka, Nepal, Iran, Sudan

7. Lebanon

8. Libya, North Korea

9. Palestinian territories, Eritrea, Ethiopia

10. South Sudan

Welcoming countries

The index also ranks the world’s most “welcoming” countries.

Thirteen countries top the list as they do not require citizens from any country to register for a visa in advance of travel.


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They include: Comoros, Cote D’Ivoire, Guinea Bissau, Madagascar, Mauritania, Maldives, Micronesia, Mozambique, Samoa, Seychelles, Timor-Leste, Togo, Tuvalu and Uganda.

Canada ranks 79 on the list of welcoming countries — and only welcomes 51 out of 198 nations into the country without a visa.


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The least welcoming countries – each requiring a visa application from every other country in the world – are listed as Afghanistan, North Korea, Somalia, Syria and Turkmenistan.

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Why does it matter?

“Visa-free global mobility has become an important factor in today’s world,” Armand Arton of Arton Capital said in a statement.

“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,” he said.

READ MORE: Canada’s list of risky travel spots

Having a powerful passport facilitates migration, flow of ideas, talent and capital, Hrant Boghossian of Passport Index said.

“Countries like Canada and the U.S.A. are on the map because of migration and are leading global players because of the human capital they are able to attract,” he said.

© 2017 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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