.Brand South Africa has welcomed the country's improved performance in the 2016 Anholt-GfK Nation Brand Index. SA went up by three places in the latest survey and now stands at 35 out of 50 nation brands. “South Africa’s improved performance can be attributed to improved perceptions of our governance, immigration and investment, and people. This speaks directly to the work we are doing as a country in implementing the National Development Plan and programmes like Invest South Africa,” Brand SA CEO Kingsley Makhubela says. “In addition, our Nation Brand continues to be admired for our unspoiled natural beauty, with 13 nations ranking South Africa in the top 25 countries being assessed. Moreover, we are recognised internationally for our efforts to preserve the environment. In this regard, South Africa moved up six places to stand at 29 of 50 nations. This resonates with the brand of the country as a good international citizen.” He continues: “We can say with confidence that our country is going in the right direction as a globally competitive Nation Brand.” The study ranks the US as the strongest global nation brand, followed by Germany, the UK, Canada, France and Italy. However, all of the Top Ten suffered falls in their global reputation this year – with eight of those being classed as ‘significant’ drops. Notes GfK senior executive, Vadim Volos: “How a nation is perceived is a function of both long-standing attributes (such as stereotypes of its people or region, and images of its natural and social environment) and short-term influences (such as positive or negative news coverage or dramatic events). Each nation has some ability to impact either of these areas, by promoting the nation’s key positive assets to drive up inbound tourism and investment.”
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