ABU DHABI 17 June 2017: The UAE passport ranking advanced in 2017 to the first spot in the Arab world and 22nd globally, according to Global Passport Power Rank 2017.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation (MoFAIC) recently launched the UAE Passport Force initiative, with the view to place the State’s passport on the list of the five most important passports in the world by 2021 upon the directives of H.H. Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation.
This great achievement reflects the success of the UAE diplomacy during the past period in carrying out the directives of President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, and His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, on openness to all world countries.
The feat also comes as a result of the efforts exerted by the UAE diplomacy to establish strategic political, economic, commercial, cultural, scientific, and educational, as well as health relations and partnerships that contribute to enhancing the status of the State at the international level.
The MoFAIC underlined that the UAE 2021 Vision, which aims to make the country one of the best countries in the world by the golden jubilee of the Union, has stimulated the ministry to strengthen the State’s position in the international arena, and hence, launched the UAE Passport Force initiative to enable citizens to enter all world the countries without the need for pre-entry visa requirements. “This increases happiness of the citizens,” it added.
The ministry stepped up the diplomatic move towards greater openness to the world through the exchange of visits and contacts at the highest levels, as well as regular holding of joint committee meetings. These moves also included opening up and strengthening relations with the Latin America, Pacific and African countries, besides strong positive presence in all regional and international forums.
The MoFAIC noted that the government’s strategy aims to provide distinguished services to citizens, including exemption from pre-entry visa requirements to countries of the world – this is the strategic goal of the State. It stressed that the UAE diplomacy plays a vital role in persuading governments around the world to agree to exempt citizens from the pre-entry visa requirements when they visit their countries.
Ahmed Saeed Elham Al Dhaheri, Assistant Under-Secretary for Consular Affairs at the ministry, said that the ranking of the UAE passport as the first Arab passport and 22nd globally, according to Arton Capital Passport Index 2017, “is one of the most important achievements of the UAE diplomacy led, by H.H. Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan.”
Al Dhahiri added that these achievements are directly reflected on the citizen’s happiness through travel facilitation to the largest number of countries around the world. The UAE passport allows its holder to visit 128 countries around the world without a pre-entry visa requirement.
The UAE official noted that this status did not come from a vacuum, but through remarkable efforts and huge economic development achievements. “These great accomplishments reflect the strategic, political, economic, social and cultural dimensions, with important implications in terms of prestige and appreciation, being enjoyed by the UAE, led by President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, at international level.”
By Sheena Amos