India Country Performance, Brand Image and Reputation

India’s Nation Brand is masterfully woven with a narrative of cultural diversity, historical richness, and biodiversity hotspots. The nation’s rapid technological advancements, seen in its thriving IT industry and space exploration endeavors, add a layer of modernity and innovation to its image. India’s commitment to economic growth, social development, and its influential role in global affairs contribute to its reputation as a dynamic and influential player on the world stage.

So how does the world’s most populated country perform in terms of economic attractiveness and sustainability? Does India’s fast-growing population affect the country’s talent competitiveness? What do international rankings say about life quality in India? Let’s examine how India shapes its narrative, drawing insights from data provided by TPBO partners and other reputable institutions.

Let’s take a closer look at:

  • India’s soft power and brand strength
  • Its appeal to skilled labor, investors and visitors
  • The country’s global contribution to peace and wellbeing
  • How well it fares in terms of happiness and sustainability

India’s nation brand strength

How does India compare in terms of reputation and brand value globally?

In the U.S. News Best Countries 2023 ranking, India  secures the 30th  position behind Brazil (28th) and Thailand (29th). Notably, India excels in two key areas: movers (5th) assessing differentiating factors, distinctiveness, dynamism, and uniqueness; and heritage (10th), which examines cultural accessibility, rich history, great food, cultural and geographic attractions. Impressively, India has jumped one position from the previous year.

The Anholt-Ipsos Nation Brand Index (NBI) calculates its ranking based on averaging the scores of six different factors: exports, governance, tourism, culture, people and immigration, and tourism. According to the NBI 2023 ranking India secures the 38th position, jumping one position from the previous ranking.

Appeal to digital nomads, business, trade and travel

What is the global perception of India as a destination for living, conducting business, and tourism?

The Expat Insider 2023 notes India ranks 36th out of 53 countries. The country performs best in the Local Friendliness (20th), Healthcare (22nd), and Ease of Settling In (22nd) metrics.

As per the UNCTAD World Investment Report 2023, India secures the 8th position for FDI inflows in 2022, trailing behind Australia (6th) and Canada (7th). Maintaining its positioning from the previous ranking.  FDI flows rose by 10 per cent to $49 billion in India, making it the second largest recipient of international project finance deals, with a 64% increase and, the third largest host country for announced greenfield projects. In terms of FDI outflows, India ranks 20th in 2022, a jump of five positions from 2021.

The Bloom Consulting biannual Country Brand Ranking Trade Edition 2022-2023 assesses investment-related variables, emphasizing perceptions of a country’s trade-specific brand and evaluating branding performance. Regionally, India makes a remarkable leap to the 1st position, surpassing China (2nd) thanks to its impressive D2 – Digital Demand ©, average Net FDI inflows and social media. Globally, India secured the 3rd position, a jump of one position from the previous ranking.

In addition, the Bloom Consulting Country Brand Ranking Tourism Edition 2022-2023 places India at the 22nd global position, dropping four spots from the previous year; it trails behind South Korea (20th) and the Netherlands (21st).  Regionally, India continues to hold the 6th position.

In the IMD 2023 World Competitiveness Ranking, India secured the 40th position, showing a slight decline from its 37th ranking in 2022. Currently, it sits just behind Kuwait (38th) and Portugal (39th) while surpassing Italy (41st) and Slovenia (42nd).

In terms of specific characteristics, India ranks 33rd in economic performance, dropping five positions from the 2022 ranking. It holds the 44th position for government efficiency, experiencing a jump of one position compared to 2022. India dropped five positions to the 28th position for business efficiency, and holds the 52nd spot for infrastructure, dropping three positions from 2022.

Talent attraction and competitiveness

How well is India doing in attracting and retaining talent?

The World Economic Forum Global Competitiveness Index 2019 edition placed India 68th position among 141 countries. However, it’s important to note that an updated version of this report hasn’t been released in the past 5 years, and rankings may have shifted since then.

India, classified as a lower-income country within theCentral and Southern Asia regional group, currently holds the 103rd position in the Global Talent Competitiveness Index 2023. Notably, India ranks best in the GK Skills pillar (83rd) while the Attract pillar presents to be its biggest challenge where it ranked 132nd.

India’s soft power

How influential is India in terms of soft power?

The Global Soft Power Index 2023 ranks India 28th and indicating that there is room for improvement in terms of its Soft Power influence. Brand Finance’s 2023 Nation Brands report ranks India the 7th most valuable nation brand.

India is slowly but surely working towards improving its influence in various spheres as indicated in its rankings in several Soft Power dimensions – science & technology (14th), space exploration (9th), arts and entertainment (5th), and the influence of food and cuisine (8th).

Environmental sustainability

How well does India perform in terms of environmental sustainability?

The 2022 edition of the Environmental Performance Index (EPI) ranks India 180th among the 180 countries analysed, scoring and ranking these countries on their environmental performance using the most recent year of data available as well as providing calculable changes in scores over the previous decade.

India as a good country

In the Caf World Giving Index 2023, India secured the 43rd position. India performs best in the subfactor of helping a stranger with 60% of its adult population. This marks a significant increase as in 2022 the country ranked 57th.

In the Good Country Index, India currently holds the 52nd position overall, with notable subfactors as follows: Science & Technology (81st), Culture (112th), International Peace & Security (30th), World Order (55th), Planet & Climate (113th), Prosperity & Equality (51st), and Health & Wellbeing (22nd). It’s worth mentioning that in 2022, India was ranked 53rd, and in 2021, it held the 44th position. The biggest positive changes can be seen in the Health and Wellbeing, and the International Peace and Security factors. Whereas, the Planet and Climate, and Culture factors have experienced significant declines.

According to the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) Democracy Index 2023, India ranked in the light blue zone (7-8 range) with a 7.04 out of 10. This is higher than Indonesia (6.71) and Brazil (6.78).

The 2022 Corruption Perception Index ranks India 85th, tying with the Maldives. India’s score of 40/180  has maintained the same since 2021.

The Sustainable Development Report 2023 ranks India 112th, it highlights that India continues to face significant and major challenges in quite a few of the 17 SDGs. However, the factor of Responsible Consumption and Production Infrastructure has reached SDG status and continues to be on track. The Climate Action goal has reached SDG status but appears to be stagnating; and the No Poverty goal is on track.

Peace and Happiness in India

Is India a happy and safe place to invest time and money in?

The Global Peace Index 2023 ranks India 126th, jumping two positions from the previous year, meaning it now sits in the medium sector of the ‘State of Peace’ spectrum as defined by the Institute for Economics & Peace. India sits in between Uganda and Zimbabwe (both in 124th) and Guinea (127th). India is positioned 5th regionally amongst its fellow South Asian countries, led by Bhutan and Nepal.

The Institute for Economics & Peace similarly ranks India within the high impact zone in terms of ‘Impact of Terrorism’ in the 2022 Global Terrorism Index. India ranks 13th, sitting in between Mozambique (12th) and the Democratic Republic of the Congo (14th).

Meanwhile, the World Happiness Report 2023 which displays the Ranking of Happiness based on a three-year-average 2020–2022 ranks India 126th.

Last updated in November 2023. More country profiles here.

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