Sierra Leone’s passport has been ranked as the second most powerful passport in West Africa. Additionally, it sits at the top position as the most powerful passport within countries in the Mano River Union (Guinea and Liberia).
The ranking was done by the Henley Passport Index which is the original and credible ranking of all the world’s passports. Sierra Leone’s position was determined according to the number of destinations its passport holders can access without a prior visa.
The country’s passport improved 10 places to 74 in 2023, up from 83 in 2022, according to the Henley Passport Index Report released this week. The francophone nation of Ivory Coast came second in the sub-region with a ranking of 79, followed by the Guinean passport at 80 and the Liberian passport at the bottom at 87.
Over 199 countries are ranked according to the number of countries their citizens can travel to without the need for a visa or where they could get a visa on arrival.
The Gambian passport ranks the highest in West Africa, with a global ranking of 72, with Sierra Leone in second position.
Cape Verde (75), Ghana (76), Benin (78), Burkina Faso (79), Cote d’Ivoire (79), Guinea (80), Senegal (81), Togo (81), Niger (82), Guinea Bissau (83), Mali (83), Liberia (87), and Nigeria (91), all trail behind Sierra Leone.
Henley and Partners who are the publishers of the Henley Passport Index highlighted that the global mobility gap between those at the top and bottom of the index is now wider than it has ever been, with top-ranked Singapore able to access 165 more destinations visa-free than Afghanistan.
The index is based on exclusive data from the International Air Transport Association (IATA) – the largest, most accurate travel information database – and enhanced by Henley & Partners’ research team. The global ranking is done based on the freedom of travel for holders of a country’s ordinary passport.