UAE takes leap of faith

UAE takes leap of faith
Overall trust in UAE institutions - government, NGOs, media and businesses - jumped six per cent - one of the highest gains in the world.

dubai - Nation climbs global rankings for trust in its government, institutions and media

By Waheed Abbas

Published: Tue 23 Jan 2018, 8:35 PM

Last updated: Wed 24 Jan 2018, 8:23 AM

The UAE is among the world's most trusted nations, jumping one place to be ranked fourth in the 2018 Edelman Trust Barometer.

Released at the World Economic Forum on Monday, the data showed that the UAE residents' trust is even higher in the government as it is the world's second most trusted government after China.

Overall trust in UAE institutions - government, NGOs, media and businesses - jumped six per cent - one of the highest gains in the world - to 66 in 2018.

Hamad Buamim, president and CEO, Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry, said among the "key ingredients for the UAE's success has been the government's ability to work closely with the private sector and other stakeholders within our society."

"This special relationship has helped create an inclusive culture built on trust and tolerance, where people feel empowered to contribute towards a common vision. This unique approach to governing has helped accelerate progress, enhance competitiveness and position the UAE as a role model in how governments can effectively implement policies that foster happiness and harness the potential of its people," he said.

Karthik Ramamurthy, regional director and head for consulting for MEA and India at Ipsos, said one of the most important factors leading to trust in an institution is transparency.

"Transparency is the way the institutions deal with its stakeholders and are seen to listen to them across channels. The other component is decisive action post feedback to better the stakeholder experience. I believe both have been consistently pursued by the leadership of the UAE - examples being the happiness initiative, the DED's initiative for consumer rights, etc.

"This leadership mindset lays the ground rules of other institutions operating in the country. So, there is a continual effort to promote feedback from the residents and there is confidence that the feedback wouldn't go in vain because action is taken," Ramamurthy said.

Similarly, UAE residents' trust in media witnessed the biggest jump of 12 per cent, reaching 56. The citizens of China, Indonesia and India posed highest trust ion their media institutions.

The trust of UAE residents increased in platforms such as search engines and social media by six per cent. However, trust in UAE employers remained unchanged at 76 per cent, higher than the global average of 72.

The residents' trust in NGOs and businesses also grew six per cent to 61 and four per cent to 68, respectively.

The emirate, however, retained its fourth ranking as the most informed public in the survey of 28 countries.

The UAE Trust Index has steadily grown from 57 per cent in 2012 to 66 per cent in 2018.

Globally, China was the most trusted nation of 2018, followed by Indonesia, India, the UAE, Singapore, Mexico, the Netherlands, Malaysia, Canada and Argentina.

Among the top gainers and losers, the US and Italy saw their trust ranking slumping nine and five per cent, respectively. Trust decline in the US was the steepest ever measured, according to Edelman.

China was the top gainer with a seven per cent rise followed by the UAE (six per cent) and South Korean (also six per cent).

Among other finds, technology (75 per cent) remains the most trusted industry sector followed by education (70 per cent), professional services (68 per cent) and transportation (67 per cent). Financial services (54 per cent) was once again the least trusted sector along with consumer packaged goods (60 per cent) and automotive (62 per cent).

Companies headquartered in Canada (68 per cent), Switzerland (66 per cent), Sweden (65 per cent) and Australia (63 per cent) are most trusted.
The least trusted country brands are Mexico (32 per cent), India (32 per cent), Brazil (34 per cent) and China (36 per cent). Trust in brand US (50 per cent) dropped five per cent, the biggest decline of the countries surveyed.

Nearly seven in 10 respondents worry about fake news and false information being used as a weapon.

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