India Retains 34th Position on Brand Index, China and US Register Significant Fall

·2-min read

The latest Nation Brand Index (NBI) revealed that India retained its 34th position among 50 nations, conducted by market research firm Ipsos in collaboration with Simon Anholt.

The US which held NBI’s top spot on seven occasions, dropped four positions from the sixth place in 2019 to the 10th this year and China, which had remained stable at 23rd over the past four years, fell 12 spots to the 35th this year, below India.

The study analyses nations based on aspects such as exports, governance, culture, people, tourism, immigration and investment. Additionally, race or ethnicity was used for sample balancing in the US, UK, South Africa, India, and Brazil.

"The Anholt-Ipsos Nations Brand India 2020 shows, the upside of India’s image is determined by the reputation strengths of its cultural heritage, exports, contribution to science and technology. The brand weakness is perceived to be around governance and people; friendliness of Indians and the way we feel about the environment. Perceptions are not reality. At the same time perception is the only reality," Parijat Chakraborty, country service line leader, Ipsos public affairs and corporate reputation said in a statement.

The US and China’s decline was triggered by a sharp decrease in public opinion of their governance, people, tourism, as well as immigration and investment – traditional areas of reputational strength.

“Not for the first time, this year’s NBI shows that country images are unlikely to be affected by domestic factors: how well or badly a country has managed the pandemic, for example. Simply because the domestic affairs of most countries have little or no impact on the lives of people outside that country’s own borders. What really does make a difference is the impact a country is perceived to have on the rest of humanity and the planet, whether positive or negative," Simon Anholt said in a statement.

Germany retained its top position, the UK’s ranking jumped from fourth to second while Australia and New Zealand which saw notable improvements on the overall NBI rank. The former moved from the 10th place to eighth, while the latter rose to 12th spot from 14th - marking the highest NBI rankings ever recorded for both of these nations.