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UAE among top ‘nation brands’

DUBAI, 1 November [Gulf News] – Soaring tourism, a stable government and big push towards e-commerce have made the United Arab Emirates (UAE) the third-strongest nation in terms of “brand-strength”, alongside Singapore and Switzerland, according to global consulting Brand Finance’s “Nation Brands” 2015 report, released in October.

Singapore topped the list of “Top 10 Strongest Nation Brands”; followed by Switzerland on second place.

Qatar, at No. 9, is the only other GCC state to make the top 10 list, while India is at No. 7.

Brand Finance specialises in brand valuation and the valuation of intangible assets.

“By developing a clear vision for their brands, backed by determination and heavy investment, many of the Gulf states have followed Singapore’s lead. The cities of the UAE and Qatar were relatively unheralded until two decades ago but Dubai, Abu Dhabi and increasingly Doha now share many of the traits Singapore is lauded for,” the report said.

The report listed the UAE’s brand value at $403 billion – gave it a AAA brand rating.

Key national indicators that earned for the UAE a premium value of its nation brand includes its investor appeal and development as an aviation hub.

“They are international transportation hubs with large, modern airports, that serve as the base world leading airlines; Emirates, Etihad and Qatar Airlines. These act as flag carriers for their national and sub-national brands, just as Singapore Airlines and Changi Airport have been so crucial to Singapore’s image,” the report said.

“There is no doubt that Dubai, Abu Dhabi and increasingly Doha have vast appeal for investors, highly skilled expatriate workers and tourists from Europe, Asia and the Middle East,” it added.

Moreover, investors have come in droves to the UAE owing to its favourable tax regime, while attracting talent from all over the world. Expatriates see the UAE’s income tax-free regimes as a big draw, even as its vibrant aviation and tourism industries have created a knock on effect on others.

India soars the most among BRICS

Meanwhile, India has moved up one position to become the world’s seventh most-valued ‘nation brand’, with an increase of 32 per cent in its brand value to $2.1 billion (Dh7.7 billion) – the highest among all the top 20 nations on the list.

As per a report on world’s most valuable nation brands by global consultants Brand Finance, India is sole among the Brics nations to have witnessed an increase in its brand value, with the others – Brazil, Russia, China and South Africa – seeing a drop in their respective brand valuations.

India is the second most valued among these emerging economies after China, followed by Brazil, Russia and South Africa.