French Nationality Ranked Highest in the World

France’s quality of nationality is the best in the world, according to the third edition of the Henley & Partners – Kochenov Quality of Nationality Index (QNI).

French Nationality Ranked Highest in the World
Ahead of the Relocate Festival of Global Mobility Thinking on 11 May, Marianne Curphey looks at the Quality of Nationality Index (QNI) developed by Professor Dr Dimitry Kochenov, one of the Festival's expert speakers.To buy your tickets and to find out more go to: www.thinkrelocateevents.com
According to a new report by Henley & Partners, France's quality of nationality is the best in the world. French nationality earned a score of 81.7 per cent, fractionally ahead of Germany, which was knocked off the top spot for the first time in seven years, with a score of 81.6 per cent.While the difference between France’s and Germany’s results is relatively small, France’s comparative advantage lies in its greater Settlement Freedom (attributable mainly to the country’s former colonial empire).

QNI study: now in its third year

Iceland and Denmark take third and fourth place, respectively, on this year’s Index, which is the only one of its kind that objectively measures and ranks all the world’s nationalities as legal statuses through which to develop your talents and business.The UK drops down a position to 13th place, again failing to secure a spot in the top ten, while the US increases its position by two ranks, claiming 27th place, with the country’s relatively poor standing on the Index primarily due to its low Settlement Freedom compared to EU member states.The QNI study, now in its third year, looks at two groups of factors when assessing the quality of nationality and the benefits of holding a passport from a particular state. These are internal factors, such as the scale of the economy, human development, and peace and stability, and external ones, which include visa-free travel and the ability to settle and work abroad.

A detailed analysis of contemporary trends in citizenship

The co-founders of the index, Prof Kochenov and Dr Christian Kälin, analysed data and weighed both the quality and diversity of destinations when drawing up rankings. Access to important trading blocs such as the US and EU was ranked higher than pure geographical size or number of countries available for citizens to settle in.As a result, the third edition, updated with 2017 data, provides a detailed analysis of contemporary trends in citizenship and migration regulation worldwide.China climbs two places to rank 59th, and Russia maintains its position at 63rd place on the Index. This year, the UAE has for the first time ever overtaken Israel on the QNI, now ranking 46th, with Israel in 48th position. The Emirati nationality has climbed 13 positions over the past five years, making a significant leap forward when its holders received visa-free travel access to the Schengen Area in 2016.
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Prof. Dr. Dimitry Kochenov, a leading constitutional and citizenship law professor and co-creator of the Index, says the key premise of the QNI is that it is possible to compare the relative worth of nationalities as opposed to simply that of states.“Europe remains the undisputed global leader in terms of nationality quality, and emerging economies would need an entire century of unchecked success to unseat it from this position,” he says. “Accordingly, any loss will be felt much more acutely by an increasingly isolated Britain in the case of a hard Brexit.”

The Brexit effect on UK nationality

Overall, Colombia has been the highest climber since 2013, rising 50 positions and improving its value by 14.6 per cent. By contrast, the Qatari nationality has dropped massively as a result of regional diplomatic conflicts.Prof Dr Dimitry Kochenov is an expert in citizenship, nationality and immigration law. He is Chair of EU Constitutional Law at Groningen University in the Netherlands and also chairs the Investment Migration Council, a global association of investment migration professionals. His assessment of the post-Brexit landscape is a gloomy one. At present, access to Europe makes being British a high quality nationality, but he warns that the effects of Brexit will degrade its value as a nationality. He will be presenting his findings at the Festival of Global Mobility Thinking in London on May 11, and giving his opinion on the post-Brexit landscape for work, travel and settlement.
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