Germany has been named the country with the best “brand image” according to a new study of 50 countries.
It has leapfrogged the USA, which previously held the title.
The National Brands Index, conducted in association with independent policy advisor Simon Anholt, conducts what it says is the world’s most comprehensive global nation branding strategy, combining six dimensions: governance, exports, people, culture & heritage, tourism, investment and immigration.
It considers factors such as how people perceive a country’s quality of life, business environment, tolerance and the public image of a country’s products and services.
The survey measured “the power and quality of each country’s ‘brand image”, according to DW.com.
Germany moved up to the top spot having been second in 2016, while the US dropped all the way from first to sixth. This was attributed in part to the “Trump effect” – the notion that Donald Trump’s policies and personality may have harmed America’s image abroad. The USA slipped from 19 to 23 for “governance” – something which the survey said was directly “indicative” of the Trump effect.
Germany’s Foreign Minister, Sigmar Gabriel, expressed delight with the result, saying: “Germany’s image no longer rests on our economic strength. People think we’re capable of much in the world.”
The United Kingdom remained in third place despite fears over its reputation following the Brexit referendum result, while Italy dropped from sixth to seventh and France rose from fifth to second. Canada, Switzerland, Australia and Sweden all remained in their 2016 places at fourth, eight, ninth and tenth respectively.