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India falls 6 spots to rank 144 in Passport Index 2023: All you must know

The sharp fall in India's ranking has been attributed to the change in European Union's policy

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BS Web Team New Delhi

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Indian passport slipped six ranks on the Passport Index 2023 released by financial advisory services firm Arton Capital. As compared to the 138th rank out of 199 countries in 2022, India ranked 144 with a mobility score of 70 in 2023. This is the largest global fall in the index this year.

The ranking was topped by the United Arab Emirates (UAE) with a mobility score of 181. It was followed by Sweden, Germany, Finland, Luxembourg, Spain, France, Italy, the Netherlands and Austria, with a joint mobility score of 174.

According to a report by The Economic Times, the index also showed drops in the scores of other Asian economies like Vietnam, Indonesia, China, and Thailand.

The sharp fall in India's ranking has been attributed to the change in European Union's policy. Several nations, like Serbia, have been under pressure to introduce visa requirements for Indian nationals.

South Korea had the highest score of 174 in South Asia and ranked 12th on the list. Japan, with a score of 172, ranked 26th. Almost all the other Asian countries saw a fall in their rankings.

What is The Passport Index?

The Passport Index is an interactive passport ranking tool backed by Arton Capital, based on the access of a country's passport to other nations. This is a real-time tool, and the rankings keep changing as the countries change their mobility scores. The report said that the full implications of China's lockdown have not been fully realised yet.

How has India's score changed throughout the years?

India's mobility score was 71 in 2019. It rose to 73 in 2022, riding the wave of increased mobility, but now it has again fallen to 70 in 2023. The ranking last year was 138.

"The lack of visa-free agreements with influential blocs like the EU, or regional competitors such as India and Japan, therefore, continue to limit the strength of its passport," the report said.

How is the mobility score calculated?

According to the index's official website, Mobility Score is the total number of countries that can be easily accessed with a given passport. It is calculated by adding the total countries which allow Visa-free travel, Visa-on-arrival, eTA, and eVisa issued within three days to a passport.

How has the Indian passport ranked in other indices?

In January, India ranked 85th out of 199 countries in the Henley Passport Index. The index ranks countries based on the number of destinations the passport holders of the country can access without a pre-departure visa application.

The report said that Indians can travel to 59 countries without a visa. Japan topped the list.

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First Published: Mar 30 2023 | 12:59 PM IST

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