Africa’s 10 most powerful passports in 2024

Henley & Partners has unveiled the 2024 rankings for the world’s most influential passports. Utilizing International Air Transport Association (IATA) data, the list reflects passport strength through visa-free access to countries.

Japan and Singapore still appear in first place among the most powerful passports in the world in terms of destinations (194 destinations out of 227). The two Asian countries are joined by four member countries of the European Union: Germany, Spain, France and Italy.

As usual, Europe dominates this ranking, with no less than 27 countries appearing in the top 10 places. South Korea slips into 2nd place, Australia and New Zealand in 6th position with 189 destinations, just ahead of the American passport with 188 destinations.

The first African country in the Henley & Partners ranking is Seychelles in 26th place with 156 destinations accessible without visas. The paradise archipelago records a jump of three places compared to the 2023 ranking, still closely followed by another highly popular tourist destination: Mauritius, which is in 30th position with 150 visa-free destinations.

You have to go down to 53rd place to find another country in continental Africa: South Africa. The most industrialized country on the Black Continent is still ahead of its southern African neighbours Botswana (59th), Lesotho and Namibia (65th), and Eswatini (66th).

East Africa only appears in 67th position (Kenya and Malawi), followed by Tanzania in 69th. Morocco and Tunisia, in 71st position, are the first representatives from North Africa, along with Zambia.

Gambia is the first country in West Africa in 72nd place, including a jump of five places, just ahead of Cape Verde and Uganda.

The majority of African countries follow one another in the list, with Somalia still occupying the unenviable position of the weakest African passport, in 99th place with 36 destinations.

Africa’s ranking

Seychelles (156 destinations)

Mauritius (150 destinations)

South Africa (108 destinations)

Botswana (91 destinations)

Lesotho and Namibia (80 destinations)

Eswatini (78 destinations)

Kenya and Malawi (76 destinations)

Tanzania (73 destinations)

Source: AfricaNews

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