UAE leads Mena region on Global Soft Power Index, among top 15 worldwide

Globally, the USA bounced back to the number one position


Waheed Abbas

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Published: Tue 15 Mar 2022, 10:03 AM

Last updated: Tue 15 Mar 2022, 11:42 AM

The UAE Vice-President has hailed the country’s top ranking in the Global Soft Power Index.

His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, said the index surveyed 100,000 people in 101 countries. The country was ranked first regionally and 10th globally when it comes to ‘influence’.

It was also ranked 10th globally in diplomatic influence and 11th in media influence.

“The real soft power of the UAE is its development model that brings together the East and West. It brings together the best ideas and minds and people of all cultures without discrimination — to build the best development experience in the world,” tweeted Sheikh Mohammed.

The UAE retains its position as the top position in the Middle East and North Africa on the Global Soft Power Index and also improving its ranking by two positions to the rated among the top 15 nations in the world.

According to the Global Soft Power Index 2022 released by Brand Finance on Tuesday, the Emirates improved its score to 52.0 – thanks to its strong and friendly international relations with other countries, investor-friendly policies, successful handling of the pandemic,

The survey covered over 100,000 respondents rating 120 countries in the world.

The UAE performed best on the Business & Trade pillar, counting among the global top 10. Its best metric overall is the ‘easy to do business in and with’ where it comes 4th, followed by ‘strong and stable economy’ where it ranks 8th.

“The UAE is emerging from the Covid-19 pandemic strong, with its trade and investment prowess underscored by the success of the Expo 2020 Dubai. Aligning the working week with the majority of the world to Monday-Friday is likely to solidify positive perceptions of the UAE as a business-friendly nation in the next Global Soft Power Index survey, but the introduction of federal corporate tax from 2023 may moderate that impact in the following years,” Brand Finance said.

Saeed Mohammed Al Eter, chairman of UAE Government Media Office, said if a nation is admired, respected and trusted, this means people are more willing to accept its actions, to question them and seek answers and reason rather than instantly condemn them.

“I believe that turning our backs on selfishness and breaking down barriers, welcoming other philosophies, ideologies, faiths and approaches are all keys to soft power. Ultimately, being open and welcoming, honest and generous are values that build trust – and in trust, we have the bedrock of co-operation,” added Al Eter.

As per Global Soft Power Index 2022, the UAE is rated higher than the Netherlands, Singapore, Denmark, Norway, New Zealand, Israel, India, Pakistan and many other big countries.

Another key metric where the UAE has been ranked in the top 10 is ‘Influence’.

According to Brand Finance’s latest study, the signing and implementation of the Abraham Accords is likely to be the key reason behind the UAE’s improvement as well as in the International Relations sub-index, where it claims the 11th spot.

The UAE also moved up on the ‘good relations with other countries’ statement to 23rd and on ‘helpful to countries in need’ it now ranks 11th, which can be attributed to donations of protective equipment and vaccines over the course of the pandemic. The UAE has also improved its Covid-19 Response score, ranking 12th compared to last year’s 15th.


Nevertheless, the UAE’s fastest improvement this year has been recorded in the Education and Science pillar because its focus on the high-tech economy and specialised education as well as the bold venture into space exploration with the Emirates Mars Mission have influenced perceptions of the UAE’s capabilities in this field.

Regionally, Israel came second in the Global Soft Power Index and 23rd globally followed by Saudi Arabia (24th), Qatar (26th), Egypt (31st), Kuwait (36th) and Morocco (46th).

Globally, the USA bounced back to the number one position on the Global Soft Power Index followed UK, Germany, China, Japan, France, Canada, Switzerland, Russia, Italy, Spain, South Korea, Australia, Sweden and the UAE.

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