Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 28 November 2020

UAE named the most valuable brand in the Middle East

The country's nation brand is valued at $672 billion, a Brand Finance study says

The UAE is the most valuable brand in the Middle East and has climbed up two spots to reach 18th place in a global ranking of 100 nations
The UAE is the most valuable brand in the Middle East and has climbed up two spots to reach 18th place in a global ranking of 100 nations

The UAE was named the most valuable brand in the Middle East, according to a new report from consultancy Brand Finance.

The country also climbed up two spots to reach the 18th place in a global ranking of 100 nations on the back of new initiatives rolled out by the government in the fields of space and economy.

The UAE’s nation brand is valued at $672 billion, according to the Nation Brands 2020 report which analyses the brand value of countries. Saudi Arabia also moved up a place to rank at 21, while the US topped the ranking. China came in second and Japan third.

“The UAE’s efforts to elevate its profile with a new Nation Brand Identity and initiatives such as the Emirates Mars Mission and Expo 2020 have brought the UAE into the spotlight and are helping in efforts towards an improved perceptual image amongst world audiences,” David Haigh, chief executive of Brand Finance, said.

Earlier this year, the UAE launched its first mission to Mars in an effort to develop its scientific and technological capabilities and reduce its reliance on oil.

The Hope Probe blasted off from Japan’s Tanegashima Space Centre on July 19 for a seven-month journey to the red planet, where it will orbit and send back data about the atmosphere. The UAE will also host Expo 2020, one of the world’s largest trade events next year in Dubai.

“The successful launch of the Emirates Mars Mission and the vast global media coverage of the event has been a significant factor in helping the country’s Nation Brand weather the pandemic. The mission alone has been valued as contributing some $6.8bn to the Emirates’ Nation Brand valuation,” Mr Haigh said.

The UAE’s rise in the index is also assisted by diplomatic developments such as the normalisation of ties with Israel, according to the report.

The rise in rankings comes amid many headwinds faced by the global economy. The Covid-19 pandemic is estimated to have slashed $22 trillion off company valuations worldwide in the first quarter of 2020, and the International Monetary Fund has forecast the global economy will contract 4.4 per cent this year.

The US and China recorded brand values of $23.7tn and $18.8tn respectively. The US took a 14 per cent hit to its brand value due to a rise in the number of coronavirus infections, while China’s brand value remained stable largely.

Japan has fared relatively better than its counterparts, recording a modest 6 per cent loss in brand value that fell to $4.3tn.

Ireland has bucked the negative trend this year as the only nation brand in the top 20 to record a positive brand value growth of 11 per cent to $670bn, largely attributable to its “forecasts being impacted less dramatically than others on the global stage" despite the twin threat of Brexit and Covid-19.

Vietnam has emerged as the fastest-growing nation brand in this year’s ranking with its brand value rising 29 per cent to $319bn as the South-East Asian nation becomes an attractive destination for investment in the manufacturing sector.

Argentina, on the other hand, is the fastest falling nation brand with its brand value dropping 57 per cent, as Covid-19 cases pass one million mark.

Top 100 nation brands in the Nation Brands 2020 ranking lost an estimated $13.1tn of brand value as they faced the fallout from the devastating Covid-19 pandemic, the report added.

Updated: November 14, 2020 05:22 PM

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