LONDON, UK–Countries are brands that are extensively marketed. And according to Brand Finance’s Nation Brands 2020 ranking, Canada retains 8th position, with a brand value of USD1.9 trillion, while Germany is the world’s strongest nation brand.
Canada, like most countries, saw a decrease in its brand value. It declined by 13 percent; to put this in perspective the top 100 nation brands have lost USD13.1 trillion of brand value.
As with other nations globally, Canada has been grappling with the devastating repercussions of the COVID-19 pandemic, said the report. The Canadian economy has come to an almost complete standstill for the second time, as the nation braces itself for a second wave of the virus. With Prime Minister Trudeau surviving his third confidence vote recently since his narrow re-election last year, the nation’s politics seem as turbulent as the economy.
“The downward trend of nearly all the world’s most valuable nation brands is unsurprising given the year we are currently experiencing,” said David Haigh, CEO of Brand Finance. “With COVID-19 contributing to the recent rise of protectionism, we may see a reversal of the economic growth brought about by globalization. Having said that, optimism has certainly prevailed, with forecasts looking less dire than initially predicted, and with the announcement of a working vaccine beginning to be rolled out, the future is certainly looking brighter.”
This may be the case too in Canada, particularly with the outcome of the recent U.S. election: given the strong trade including investment and tourism ties between both countries.
Parul Soni, who is associate, Brand Finance, pointed out that the health crisis that is crippling nations in every corner of the world has led to an even worse economic crisis in several nations globally, including in Canada and the U.S. The International Monetary Fund (IMF) projects that GDP in Canada and the U.S. will fall dramatically and not return to pre-pandemic levels for a while.
However, the recent announcements of a highly effective vaccine may well speed up the recovery process and as a result there may be less of an impact to Canada’s nation brand value than was seen this year. So it may be possible to return to normality sooner than expected.
“The Biden Administration – while it may not mean marked differences to the U.S.-Canada relationship – is likely to bring greater normality, stability and a reset in U.S.-Canada relations,” said Soni. “Joe Biden’s and Kamala Harris’s views on key issues like climate change are more aligned to Trudeau’s, forecasting a more steady alliance and cooperation. The benefits of this strengthened relationship will no doubt be felt by the economy and ultimately the nation’s brand on the world stage. However, the downside risks of premature optimism with the vaccine, and a tumultuous transfer of power in the U.S. in the short to medium term still remain.”