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Sharp Drop in World Views of US, UK: Global Poll

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4 July 2017 - Negative views of US influence in the world have increased in the majority of countries surveyed in the latest global country poll for the BBC World Service. Compared to 2014, when the poll was last conducted, double-digit increases in negative views of the US, rising to majorities, are now found in several of its NATO allies, including the UK (up from 42 to 64%), Spain (44 to 67%), France (41 to 56%), and Turkey (36 to 64%). Negative opinion has also sharply risen in Latin American nations Mexico (up from 41 to 59%), and Peru (29 to 49%). In Russia, negative views of the US have also increased, from 55 to 64 per cent.

The Country Ratings Poll was conducted by GlobeScan/PPC among 18,000 people in 19 countries between December 2016 and April 2017. It asked respondents to rate 16 countries and the EU on whether their influence in the world is “mostly positive” or “mostly negative.”

On average, across the 17 countries that were surveyed in both 2017 and 2014, negative views of US influence in the world have gone up by six points to nearly half (49%), while positive views have dropped by five points to about a third (34%). The US showed the most substantial decline in ratings out of all the countries polled this year.

The poll also reveals that views of the United Kingdom, historically quite positive, have gone down, led by pronounced drops in positive views among EU citizens in Germany (down from 51 to 35%), France (72 to 63%), and Spain (41 to 34%). Similar declines are also seen in several of the Commonwealth nations such as Pakistan (down from 39 to 20%), India (43 to 33%), and Canada (80 to 73%). Attitudes in China buck this trend, with favourable opinion of the UK among the Chinese rising markedly, from 39 to 73 per cent. A slight majority of 51 per cent across the 17 tracking countries still regards British influence in the world as mostly positive, but this is down four points since 2014.

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On the more positive side, perceptions of Canada have warmed up, with positive ratings rising by five points to an average of 61 per cent across the 17 tracking countries. The biggest jumps are found in Mexico, (up from 42 to 69%), Brazil (50 to 71%), China (63 to 82%), Germany (53 to 63%), and Turkey (33 to 43%). On average, Canada is now ranked first in terms of the perceived positive influence the country projects in the world, ahead of Germany (which stands at 59%, up by 1 point).

In the ranking of favourably-viewed nations, Canada and Germany are followed by Japan, whose perceived positive influence has strongly bounced back (56%, up 6 points), ending a correction period that started in 2013. France (52%, up 4 points) and the EU (48%, up 3 points) complete the leader board of those countries that have seen their positive influence capital grow since 2014.

Attitudes towards the perceived world influence of other rated countries reflect recent geopolitical tensions. Views of Russia continue to be quite negative, sustaining a sharp decline that began in 2013. On average, across the 17 tracking countries, 49 per cent hold negative views of Russia. Russian opinion aside, the only country with a majority leaning favourably towards Russia is China, where positive ratings have gone up from 55 to 74 per cent. Public opinion towards North Korea is also at its lowest since tracking began, with 59 per cent across the tracking countries expressing an unfavourable view towards the Pyongyang regime (up 3 points since 2014, and swamping positive feelings at 17%). Yet, Iran continues to be the least-favourably viewed nation, with 61 per cent rating its influence negatively across the tracking countries.

Steven Kull, Director of PPC, commented: “Though views of the US slipped some in President Obama’s later years, ratings for the US have now gone all the way back to levels they were at the end of the George W. Bush administration.”

 

A total of 17,910 citizens across 19 countries were interviewed face-to-face or by telephone between December 26, 2016 and April 27, 2017. Polling was conducted for BBC World Service by the international polling firm GlobeScan and its research partners in each country, together with the Program for Public Consultation (PPC) at the University of Maryland. Countries were rated by half samples in all countries polled except for India. In five of the 19 countries, the sample was limited to major urban areas. The margin of error per country ranges from +/- 3.1 to 5.2 per cent.

Other Key Findings

The poll also highlights that the global public has mixed feelings about the current influence of some emerging economies. While views of Brazil still lean to the positive—on average, 38% positive vs 30% negative across tracking countries—there has been a six-point drop in positive views, fuelled by diverse regions and aggravating a decline that started in 2013. The largest decreases are found in Indonesia (down from 56 to 36%), the US (55 to 40%), Canada (56 to 41%), Germany (21 to 6%), Spain (35 to 21%), and Peru (61 to 48%). Interestingly, Brazilians themselves are leading this trend, with positive views of their own country plunging from 66 to 30 per cent—the only surveyed country where fewer than half see their own nation in a positive light.

Global views of China have also become more negative, although less drastically. On average, across the 17 tracking countries, positive ratings of China have dropped (from 43 to 41%) and negative ratings have gone up (from 40 to 42%). However, this moderate overall movement masks some dramatic changes in opposite directions in specific countries. Favourable views have dropped from 52 to 28 per cent in Indonesia, while rising from 33 to 55 per cent in Mexico. However, views in Africa, where China is making major investments, continue to be strongly positive (83% in Nigeria, 63% in Kenya). Despite Chinese warm opinion of Russia these days, only 44 per cent of Russians reciprocate with a positive view of China.

Views of India are stable, with average positive views across tracking countries at 37 per cent (down by 1 point), and negative views at 39 per cent (unchanged from 2014)—but this masks some major movements. Most strikingly, negative views have jumped in China (from 35 to 56%), and in Brazil (36 to 57%). In Nigeria, positive views have collapsed from 64 to 47 per cent. On the other hand, negative views have dropped from 50 to 35 per cent in Spain, while positive views have jumped from 45 to 56 per cent in the UK (by far the most favourable country towards India).

The issue of Brexit notwithstanding, positive views of the European Union have gone up from 45 to 48 per cent. Even in the UK, positive views are up to 55 per cent—the highest level since 2009, although it is unclear whether this reflects second thoughts about Brexit or more satisfaction with an EU that is seen as having been pushed to a comfortable distance. The favourable trend in views of the EU is also led by strong increases in positive ratings from countries where its trade relationships have strengthened, including China (from 32 to 66%), Mexico (37 to 54%), and Canada (64 to 70%).

GlobeScan’s Associate Director Lionel Bellier commented: “The poll suggests that perceptions of the influence of the UK in the world, at a high in 2014 after 10 years of tracking, may have taken a toll with the Brexit referendum. On the other hand, and despite uncertainty around the terms and impact of the upcoming separation with the UK, the perceived influence of the EU seems to be stronger than it was before the UK voted itself out.”

 

For full methodology, question wording, and detailed results, including region-by-region data for all key questions, please see the drop-down links at the bottom of this article.

 

For more details, please visit www.GlobeScan.com or www.WorldPublicOpinion.org as well as the GlobeScan Espresso Blog at http://www.globescan.com/news-and-analysis/blog.html 

 


Participating Countries

participating countries

In Brazil, China, Indonesia, Kenya, and Turkey, urban samples were used.


Long-Term Trends

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Media Contacts

For media interviews, please contact:

  • Stacy Rowland, Director Public Relations and Communications, GlobeScan Incorporated
    • Tel: +1 (416) 992-2705
    • This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  
  • Lionel Bellier, Associate Director, GlobeScan Incorporated
    • Mob: +44 (0) 789-601-1645
    • This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
  • Steven Kull, Director, Program for Public Consultation
    • Tel: +1 202 232 7500
    • Mobile: +1 301 254 7500
    • This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


 

GlobeScan Incorporated is a strategy and insights consultancy, focused on helping our clients to build long-term trust with their stakeholders. Offering a suite of specialist research and advisory services, GlobeScan partners with clients to meet strategic objectives across reputation, sustainability and purpose.

GlobeScan conducts research in over 90 countries and is a signatory to the UN Global Compact. Established in 1987, GlobeScan is an independent, management-owned company with offices in Toronto, London, and San Francisco. www.GlobeScan.com

The Program for Public Consultation (PPC) of the Center for International and Security Studies at the University of Maryland, undertakes research on attitudes in publics around the world on a variety of international issues and manages the international research project WorldPublicOpinion.org

BBC World Service is an international multimedia broadcaster, delivering a wide range of language and regional services on radio, TV, online and via wireless handheld devices. It uses multiple platforms to reach its weekly audience of 192 million globally, including shortwave, AM, FM, digital satellite and cable channels. Its news sites include audio and video content and offer opportunities to join the global debate. BBC World Service offers its multilingual radio content to partner FM stations around the world and has numerous partnerships supplying content to news websites, mobile phones and other wireless handheld devices as well as TV channels. For more information, visit bbc.com/worldservice.

Backgrounder: Country-by-Country Results

The following sections examine in detail the poll results for each of the countries rated. 

The United States

USA


Global views of the United States have continued to deteriorate since 2014 in the majority of countries surveyed. In the 17 tracking countries polled about US influence in the world in both 2014 and 2017, an average of 34 per cent of respondents hold positive views, while 49 per cent hold negative views. Compared to 2014, this represents a decrease of five points in positive opinion and an increase of six points in negative opinion.

In terms of positive views, the US ranks twelfth out of 17 nations evaluated, and has dropped three places in this ranking since 2014. Of the 19 countries surveyed in 2017 (including the US), 14 lean negatively overall, four lean positively, and one is of divided opinion (Brazil). It is noteworthy that a very strong majority of Americans remains convinced that their country has a positive influence in the world—71 per cent, the highest proportion since 2005 (which was also 71%).

Views of US influence have deteriorated most steeply in Spain, the United Kingdom, and Turkey. Russia is the most antagonistic country surveyed. Only 7 per cent of Russian respondents hold a positive opinion of US influence, a fall of 14 points since 2014. Over the same interval, negative views have increased by nine points, to 64 per cent. Turkey saw the largest surge in negative views: a 28-point increase (rising to 64%), matched by a decrease of 16 points in positive views (to 20%). As a result, Turkish opinion has shifted from being divided in 2014 to being strongly negative in 2017. 2014 was the only year since tracking began in 2005 when Turkish views towards the US were not predominately negative.

In most of the Western European countries surveyed, negative views of US influence have increased, while positive views have decreased. In Spain, negative views are the highest of all of the countries surveyed, with 67 per cent posting negative ratings (up by 23 points since 2014), while positive ratings have dropped from 39 per cent to 16 per cent. In the UK, opinion has shifted dramatically, as negative attitudes are now expressed by almost two-thirds (64%, up by 22 points), while positive attitudes have fallen to one-third (33%, down by 19 points). This is the most negative perception the UK has reported towards the US since tracking began in 2005. In France, 58 per cent hold negative views (up by 17 points), while 37 per cent hold positive views (down by 14 points). As in the UK, French opinion is now leaning negatively for the first time since 2009. German views also remain generally unfavourable towards the US, but German opinion bucks the trend among Western European nations, with negative views dropping since 2014, when public opinion had been curdled by the revelation of a surveillance programme aimed at the German government by the American NSA. The proportion of negative views among Germans has fallen from 57 per cent to 40 per cent. Nonetheless, positive views remain low (although stable) at 22 per cent. Greece leans negatively as well, although less so than its EU counterparts. Thirty-eight per cent among Greeks hold a negative opinion of the US, with 30 per cent offering a positive opinion.

Views of the US have also deteriorated among respondents in neighbouring countries. In Canada, the proportion offering unfavourable ratings has increased by six points to 58 per cent, while positive views have fallen by nine points to 34 per cent. The level of negative opinion in Mexico is similar (59%), and has increased by 18 points, while positive perceptions have decreased by six points to 29 per cent. In other Latin American countries, unfavourable views are also becoming more prominent, especially in Peru, where perceptions lean negatively for the first time since tracking began in 2011. Since 2014, negative views among Peruvians have surged by 20 points to half (49%), while positive views have fallen by eight points to 40 per cent. In Brazil, opinion has soured and is now divided, with negative ratings increasing to 44 per cent (up by 6 points), and positive opinion decreasing to 42 per cent (down by 9 points).

In Asia, attitudes towards US influence are diverse. Overall, opinion in China remains unfavourable, with a high and stable proportion of 61 per cent saying that the US has a negative influence in the world. However, the proportion with positive views has risen by 15 points since 2014, to 33 per cent. Opinion in Australia also leans negatively: 52 per cent have a negative opinion (up by 6 points), while 42 per cent have a positive opinion (stable). Indonesia and Pakistan have similar opinions of US influence, with strong pluralities viewing it negatively in both countries. Nevertheless, feelings among Pakistanis have warmed, with a notable decrease in negative views, which have fallen from 61 per cent in 2014 to 43 per cent in 2017 (the lowest proportion since tracking began in 2010). Positive views of the US among Pakistanis are at their highest surveyed level following an eight-point increase to 24 per cent. India is the only surveyed country in continental Asia that shows a comfortable plurality expressing favourable views of the US (40%, vs 26% holding negative views).

In contrast to negative global trends, African opinions of the US are largely positive and have become more so since 2014. In Nigeria, the proportion holding positive views has increased by nine points to 68 per cent—the highest value among all the countries surveyed except the US itself. Over the same time, the proportion of Nigerians holding negative views has decreased by seven points to 22 per cent. Respondents in Kenya also hold largely positive views of US influence, with 67 per cent speaking well of the US (up by 12 points since 2014), and negative views holding stable at 21 per cent. 

 


 

Russia

Russia


Global views of Russia have remained fairly stable since 2014. However, opinion has never been so negative in many individual countries in the years of this survey, nor (in some cases) positive inclination so low. On average in the 17 tracking countries surveyed both in 2014 and 2017, 29 per cent report a positive perception of Russia (down by 1 point), and 49 per cent report a negative view (up by 1 point).

Russia remains the fifth most-negatively viewed country in the survey—the same ranking it held in 2014. Of the 19 countries surveyed in 2017 (including Russia), 13 lean negatively in their opinion of Russia, two are divided, and four lean positively.

English-speaking NATO countries, including the United Kingdom, continue to hold very negative perceptions of Russia, and these views have deteriorated since 2014. British respondents are the most negative towards Russia of all the countries surveyed, with unfavourable opinion at 74 per cent (up by 10 points), while positive attitudes have fallen by seven points to 21 per cent. In the US, more than seven in ten hold a negative opinion (72%, up by 8 points), and just 16 per cent hold a positive opinion (down by 7 points). Opinion is similar in Canada, where negative ratings have increased by nine points to 71 per cent, while positive ratings have decreased by eight points to 18 per cent. Australia follows this trend as well, with an eight-point rise in negative views to two-thirds (67%), and an equal fall in positive views to just over one-fifth (22%). In all of these countries, negative views are at historically high levels, with the proportion of positive views at its lowest point since tracking began in 2005.

The trend among NATO members in continental Europe is similar, with negative opinion in France near its highest level since 2005 at 71 per cent, and reaching a new high in Spain (63%, up by 5 points). In Germany, while the proportion of negative ratings has dropped from 67 per cent to 47 per cent, only 6 per cent of respondents consider Russia’s influence in the world to be positive (down by 15 points).This is the smallest positive proportion in any of the nations polled. Greece is the only European country that sees Russian influence positively, with almost half (48%) having a positive opinion, and just one-fifth (21%) holding a negative opinion.

Negative views increased the most in Turkey of all the countries surveyed, surging 21 points from 33 to 54 per cent since 2014, while positive attitudes have fallen by eight points to 28 per cent. 2014 was the only year surveyed when Turkish opinion towards Russia was not predominately negative.

Views of Russia have also deteriorated in countries outside of NATO, particularly in Latin America. Divided in 2014 (30% negative vs. 34% positive), opinion in Peru is now leaning negatively, with a 14-point rise in unfavourable ratings (to 44%), while the proportion of positive ratings has remained fairly stable. In Brazil, negative opinion has also strengthened, with half holding unfavourable views (50%, up by 7 points), while just one-third report positive views (30%, down by 5 points). Mexican attitudes have soured as well, with a 13-point rise in negative opinion to 42 per cent, and an unchanged proportion of positive ratings (37%).

Looking at the more positive side, China holds the most favourable view of Russia of all the countries surveyed, with positive opinion surging by 19 points from 55 per cent in 2014 to almost three-quarters in 2017 (74%), and negative views holding stable at 18 per cent. In India, opinion is also more favourable, driven by a drop in negative views to 19 per cent (down by 11 points), while positive views have remained relatively stable at 40 per cent. In both Pakistan and Indonesia, views remain generally negative but less so than in 2014, with the proportion of respondents reporting negative views decreasing to 30 per cent and 38 per cent, respectively (down from 47% and 49% in 2014). Unfavourable views of Russia among Pakistanis are now at their lowest level since tracking began in 2010.

Finally, in the two countries surveyed in Africa, views have warmed, shifting from being generally negative in 2014 to being divided in 2017. About four in ten in Kenya (38%) and Nigeria (42%) now consider Russia’s influence in the world to be positive, following increases in favourable ratings of nine and 12 points respectively. Meanwhile, the proportion of negative ratings stands at 39 per cent in both countries.

 



 

Germany

Germany


Perceptions of German influence in the world continue to be very positive and stable overall, with three in five holding positive views (59%, up by 1 point since 2014) and just one in five expressing a negative opinion (21%, also up by 1 point since 2014).

In terms of the proportion of positive ratings received, Germany is the second most-positively viewed country after Canada, dropping from first place in 2014. Of the 19 countries surveyed (including Germany), 15 hold generally positive views of German influence, two are split (Russia and Pakistan), and two lean negatively (Turkey and Greece).

Perceptions of German influence are varied in Europe. The UK has the most positive view, with 84 per cent reporting a positive opinion (stable, a proportion it shares with China) and 14 per cent reporting a negative view (up by 5 points). Figures are similar in France, with a stable proportion of positive opinion (79%) and just 17 per cent leaning unfavourably (but up by 6 points since 2014). Spanish attitudes, though less favourable than in the UK and France, have bounced back, improving considerably since 2014 when, for the first time, they did not lean strongly positive. Negative opinion has softened significantly since, falling from 40 per cent to 26 per cent, while positive perceptions have increased from 44 per cent to 56 per cent. In contrast to other European nations, Greek opinion is unfavourable. Greece is the most negative of all the countries surveyed, with half posting unfavourable ratings (50%) and only three in ten (29%) having a positive impression of German influence.

In the Americas, stable majorities of about seven in ten report positive views in Canada (73%), and the US (70%), with low, near-stable figures for negative opinion at 15 per cent in Canada and 17 per cent in the US. Perceptions are also favourable in Latin America. Opinion in Brazil remains stable at about two-thirds (63%) positive and one-fifth (18%) negative. In Mexico, positive attitudes have increased to over half (54%, up by 11 points), while unfavourable perceptions have remained largely unchanged (25%). Opinion is also generally positive in Peru (45% positive, stable), but the proportion of negative ratings has slightly increased from 22 per cent to 28 per cent since 2014.

Sentiment towards Germany in Africa remains positive. The mood among Nigerians has continued to warm, with 71 per cent having positive perceptions (up by 8 points), and only 16 per cent holding negative views (down by 7 points). Figures are similar in Kenya, with 64 per cent reporting positive views and 19 per cent reporting negative views.

The largest increase in favourable views of Germany is seen in China, where the proportion of respondents with a positive opinion has doubled since 2014 to 84 per cent, while the proportion holding a negative opinion has fallen from 22 per cent to 13 per cent. These are the highest levels of Chinese positive opinion of Germany yet recorded in this survey, and Chinese respondents now share with the UK the most positive opinion of Germany of all countries surveyed. Views in Australia remain strongly positive, with almost four in five having a positive opinion of German influence (79%, though this proportion has slipped 7 points) and only 10 per cent reporting a negative view (stable).

In India, favourable views are also at their highest level since tracking began in 2008, with 40 per cent having a positive attitude (up by 8 points)—more than double the proportion of negative ratings (17%, down by 9 points). Indonesians also continue to express generally positive views, but this opinion is less decisive than before, with drops of five and eight points in positive and negative ratings respectively (now 48% vs. 20%). Opinion in Pakistan has deteriorated, shifting from being narrowly positive in 2014 (35% positive vs. 27% negative) to being divided in 2017 (21% positive vs 20% negative), with over half of Pakistani respondents undecided in their opinion.

In opposition to this very favourable global trend, opinion of Germany has taken a negative turn in Russia and Turkey since 2014, when opinion was positive overall in both countries. Turkey has seen the largest increase in the proportion of respondents reporting negative views, from 24 to 45 per cent (up by 21 points), and positive views have fallen by 11 points to 36 per cent. In Russia, the proportion of negative ratings has more than doubled, from 12 to 29 per cent, and positive views have plummeted from 57 to 31 per cent (down by 26 points). This is the least favourable view of Germany that Russia has held since tracking began in 2008, and the first time that Russian opinion is divided towards Germany.

 


 

Canada

Canada


Views of Canada’s influence in the world have warmed strongly since 2014, with positive opinion jumping from 56 to 61 per cent on average in the 17 countries surveyed in 2014 and 2017. Only 15 per cent feel negatively about Canada’s influence, by far the lowest proportion in the survey.

As a result, Canada is the most-positively viewed country, moving up by from second place in 2014. Of the 19 countries surveyed (including Canada), all lean positively in their opinions of Canada’s influence except Pakistan, which is divided. In many countries, favourable views have never been stronger while this question has been tracked.

Canada’s influence is viewed most positively in the United Kingdom of all the countries surveyed, with nearly all British respondents reporting a favourable opinion (94%, up by 9 points since 2014). Similarly, 92 per cent of French respondents hold positive views of Canada’s influence (up by 5 points), second only to the UK. In both nations, this is the highest level of favourable opinion since tracking began in 2005, and negative views are also at record lows (5%, stable). Germany shows an increased positive attitude towards Canada as well, with favourable ratings rising by ten points to 63 per cent, while negative attitudes have become virtually non-existent, dropping from 20 to just 2 per cent. Strong majorities in Greece and Spain also lean favourably (70% and 59%, respectively) with marginal proportions reporting unfavourable views (4% and 9%, respectively).

Opinion is also very positive in English-speaking nations. In Australia, positive views have increased by eight points to 91 per cent. In the US, favourable opinion remains stable at 87 per cent. In each country, negative views of Canada’s influence are very low, at just 5 per cent.

In peripheral Europe, a plurality view Canada’s influence positively in Turkey, but opinion has become more polarised since 2014, with 43 per cent holding positive views (up by 10 points), while the proportion holding negative views has surged from 15 to 36 per cent. In Russia, positive views have declined by the largest margin of all of the countries surveyed, dropping from 47 to 36 per cent, while negative attitudes have remained fairly stable at 15 per cent. Though views among Russians remain positive overall, they are at their least favourable since tracking began in 2005.

In Latin America, Mexican and Brazilian views are very similar. Of all the countries surveyed, positive opinion has increased the most in NAFTA partner Mexico, surging by 27 points to reach 69 per cent, while negative opinion has softened from 21 to 12 per cent. In Brazil, positive opinion has risen by 21 points to 71 per cent, while negative opinion has fallen by 14 points to 12 per cent. In both nations, attitudes are at their most favourable since tracking began in 2005. In contrast, opinion among Peruvians is less positive, and has deteriorated somewhat since 2014. Positive attitudes have decreased by six points to 42 per cent, while negative attitudes have increased by nine points to 23 per cent.

Opinions of Canada’s influence are very similar in the two African nations surveyed. A stable majority of 55 per cent among Nigerians views Canada positively, more than double the proportion of those who hold negative perceptions (25%). Attitudes are similar in Kenya, with 54 per cent reporting positive views (up from 46% in 2014) and a stable proportion taking a negative view (23%).

Positive opinion is at a historic high in China, with favourable ratings jumping from 63 to 82 per cent and a small, decreasing proportion of negative ratings (11%, down by 6 points). Positive attitudes have also increased in India, climbing to 37 per cent (up by 6 points), while negative views have fallen by five points to 16 per cent. Bucking this trend, Pakistan and Indonesia have seen drops in the proportion holding positive opinions of Canada’s influence. In Pakistan, the mood towards Canada has shifted among Pakistanis from being narrowly positive in 2014 (36% positive vs 25% negative) to being more divided in 2017 (26% positive vs 30% negative)—though 2014 was the only year when opinion was positive overall since tracking began in 2010. Positive opinion in Indonesia has become less solid, dropping eight points to 32 per cent, though this still exceeds negative views, which are largely unchanged at 26 per cent.

 


 

The European Union

EU


Views of the European Union’s influence have improved since 2014, with 48 per cent of respondents across the 18 tracking countries polled in both 2014 and 2017 having a positive opinion of the institution (up slightly from 45% in 2014). Meanwhile, the proportion expressing negative views is stable at 30 per cent.

When weighed against the 16 individual nations assessed in the poll, the EU ranks as the sixth most-positively viewed. This rank is unchanged from 2014. Of the 19 countries polled in 2017, 14 lean positively in their views of the EU, three are divided (Greece, Pakistan, and Indonesia), and two tend to a negative opinion (Russia and Turkey).

Within the EU itself, the proportion of positive ratings for the broader organisation has remained stable. Two-thirds of French respondents (66%) consider the EU to have a positive influence in the world, more than double the proportion of those who rate the institution negatively (28%). These figures are not much changed from 2014, and the French continue to see the EU in the most positive light measured among surveyed EU members. Pluralities in both Germany and Spain offer favourable ratings of the EU (49% and 44%, respectively), and overall opinion has grown more favourable since 2014, with the proportion stating a negative opinion decreasing from 31 to 19 per cent in Germany, and from 32 to 26 per cent in Spain. Despite having voted in favour of Brexit in 2016, a majority of 55 per cent in the UK continues to see the EU favourably. Negative opinion, however, is high (but stable) at 42 per cent—the third most hostile rating out of all 19 countries surveyed, after Turkey and Russia. Greece is the only EU member country surveyed that does not lean positively in its attitudes towards the EU, with opinion clearly divided: just over a third of Greeks offer positive ratings of the EU (35%), while 36 per cent rate it negatively.

In peripheral Europe, views have shifted sharply in Russia and Turkey, and these two countries now have the most unfavourable surveyed perceptions of the EU. Negative views in Russia have doubled from 23 to 48 per cent since 2014, while positive views have fallen by a similar margin to 14 per cent (down by 23 points). Positive opinion of the EU in Russia is at its lowest level since tracking began in 2006, and 2017 is the first year when Russian opinion has been predominately negative. Turkey also displays a very large increase in negative opinion, which has nearly doubled from 25 to 48 per cent, while the proportion of positive ratings has remained almost static at 37 per cent.

In North America, 70 per cent of Canadians see the EU’s influence as positive (up by 6 points), while negative views are low and stable at 20 per cent—Canada has the most favourable opinion of the EU of all the countries surveyed. In the US, views are little changed and generally positive, with a comfortable majority expressing favourable views (56%), while negative opinion continues to hover near thirty per cent.

In the two African countries surveyed, opinions of the EU continue to be largely positive, and have recovered from a low point in 2014 in Nigeria, as positive ratings have increased by 12 points to 60 per cent, and negative opinions have fallen by 14 points to 23 per cent. Views of the EU are unchanged and favourable in Kenya, with over half (56%) expressing a positive view, and one-quarter speaking negatively (24%).

Latin American views of the EU remain generally positive, but have evolved in different directions since 2014. Favourable opinion in Brazil has grown stronger, with positive views increasing slightly (by 5 points) to 54 per cent, and negative views decreasing by the same amount to 26 per cent. The mood in Mexico has warmed more strongly, with over half of Mexicans now having a positive perception of the EU’s world influence (54%, up by 17 points), while a quarter still hold a negative view (23%, stable). On the other hand, opinion among Peruvians has deteriorated, with positive views declining from 51 per cent to 45 per cent, while negative views have gone up by 14 points, from 17 to 31 per cent.

In Asia, views of the EU are diverse, with China and Australia the most favourable in their opinion of the EU’s influence. While perceptions among Australians have remained fairly stable (57% positive vs. 34% negative), Chinese opinion has shifted greatly since 2014, from being divided (32% vs 34%) to strongly positive in 2017. Chinese respondents have reported the largest increase in positive views among all the countries surveyed, with favourable opinion growing from one-third to two-thirds (66%)—now ranking second only to Canada, and tied with France. Negative views of the EU have decreased in China by 8 points, and stand at 26 per cent.

Indian perceptions are largely unchanged and remain mildly favourable, with a narrow plurality leaning positive (31%) opposed by 26 per cent holding negative views. In neighbouring Pakistan, opinion is divided, with the proportion of Pakistanis seeing the EU in an unfavourable light decreasing from 39 to 26 per cent, while positive ratings have remained stable at a similar level (23%). This is the first year since tracking began in 2010 that Pakistani opinion towards the EU has not been predominately negative. On the other hand, Indonesian opinion has cooled, shifting from leaning positively in 2014 (40% positive vs 33% negative) to being divided in 2017 (29% positive vs 33% negative), following an 11-point drop in positive views.

 


 

The United Kingdom

UK

 

Views of the UK’s influence in the world have deteriorated sharply since 2014, though they remain largely favourable overall. On average, across the 17 countries surveyed both in 2014 and 2017, half of respondents hold positive views of the UK (51%, down by 4 points), while the proportion holding negative attitudes has gone up by two points to 25 per cent.

As a consequence of these cooling global perceptions, the UK has dropped to fifth place in the ranking of most-positively viewed countries in the survey, compared to its rank of third in 2014. Overall, among the 19 countries surveyed in 2017 (including the UK itself), 14 lean positively in their opinion, and five lean negatively.

Opinions about the UK are very diverse in continental Europe. As in 2014, France is the most favourable, although this feeling has become more attenuated, with positive views falling by nine points to 63 per cent, while negative views have increased by 12 points to 32 per cent. Greeks also view the UK favourably, with two in five (42%) having a positive opinion and one in five (22%) having a negative opinion. German opinion has become more tentative since 2014, though remaining generally positive: both positive and negative ratings have dropped by 16 points, to 35 per cent and 18 per cent, respectively. A plurality of 47 per cent takes no clear stance on whether or not the UK’s influence in the world is positive. In Spain, opinion has shifted from being somewhat positive in 2014 to being negative this year. Positive ratings have fallen from 41 to 34 per cent, while negative perceptions have gone up from 36 to 42 per cent. Unfavourable views are now at their highest level in Spain since tracking began in 2005, and this is the first year of the survey in which Spanish opinion of the UK is predominately negative.

Perceptions of the UK in English-speaking nations remain very positive. In the US, views are the most favourable among all the countries surveyed, and are largely unchanged from 2014. Almost four in five Americans (79%) see the UK’s influence as positive, and just ten per cent disapprove of it. Favourable opinion has also remained high and stable in Australia, with three-quarters (76%) posting positive ratings and only 15 per cent posting negative ones. On the other hand, positive attitudes have softened in Canada, with favourable views decreasing to 73 per cent (down by 7 points), and negative ratings doubling to 18 per cent.

In Africa, favourable attitudes have strengthened in Nigeria, with positive views up by nine points to 76 per cent, and negative views down by seven points to 15 per cent. In Kenya, seven in ten (69%) assess the UK’s influence positively, with just two in ten (20%) reporting negative opinions. However, this negative proportion has doubled since 2014, and is now at a historically high level for this country.

In Asia, attitudes towards the UK have become generally less decisive, as both positive and negative views have decreased, with the exception of China. Positive views have increased the most in China of all the countries polled, surging 34 points to 73 per cent since 2014, while negative views have fallen by seven points to 19 per cent. This is the most positive Chinese assessment of British influence since tracking began in 2005. In Indonesia, a majority remains favourable towards the UK, but both positive and negative ratings have decreased by eight points, to 51 per cent and 18 per cent, respectively. This growing indecision is much more apparent in Pakistan, where positive opinion has halved to 20 per cent, while negative opinion has decreased by six points to 29 per cent. Pakistan, which expressed divided opinion in 2014, is now sceptical about the UK’s influence in the world. The pattern of diminishing certainty is also present in India, where positive ratings have decreased by ten points to 33 per cent, and negative ratings have diminished by seven points to 20 per cent.

Perceptions in Latin America are mixed. Favourable views have increased in Mexico, and are now historically high at 53 per cent (up by 13 points since 2014), while negative opinion is relatively stable at 22 per cent. In contrast, views have taken a negative turn in Peru and Brazil. In Peru, a stable plurality remains positive towards the UK (41%), but negative views have increased from 21 to 29 per cent. In Brazil, perceptions are now somewhat negative, with two in five (39%) reporting a negative opinion, compared to 2014’s proportion of one-quarter (25%). At the same, favourable opinion has fallen 12 points, from 45 per cent to 33 per cent.

 


 

Japan

Japan


Views of Japan’s influence are positive overall and have improved strongly since 2014, halting an abrupt deterioration that began in 2013. On average, across the 18 tracking countries surveyed in both 2014 and 2017, positive perceptions have increased six points to 56 per cent of respondents, while negative perceptions have decreased by four points to 24 per cent.

Japan is now the third most-positively viewed country, an improvement of one place compared to 2014. Of the 19 countries surveyed, all countries hold a positive opinion of Japan’s influence, with the exceptions of Spain (which is divided) and China (which is strongly negative).

Perceptions of Japan among its Asian neighbours are varied. Australia is the most favourable of all the surveyed countries towards Japan, with 78 per cent of Australians posting positive ratings (up by 19 points), while negative opinion has fallen to 17 per cent (down by 12 points). Indonesia is also favourably minded, but less so than in 2014, with 57 per cent seeing Japan’s influence as positive (a drop of 13 points). The proportion of Indonesians who see Japan’s influence as negative is relatively stable at 17 per cent. In 2014, views in both India and China were at their least favourable point since tracking began in 2006, but they have improved this year. In India, positive opinion has jumped from 27 to 45 per cent, while negative opinion has fallen from 29 per cent to 17 per cent. Divided in their attitudes in 2014, Indians now lean positively in their views of Japan’s role in the world. Pakistanis share similar views, although the proportion of undecided respondents is higher: positive opinion sits at 38 per cent (down by 8 points), while negative opinion is stable at 20 percent, and 42 per cent are undecided. Attitudes in China continue to be the least favourable of all of the countries polled, but negative opinion is lower than in 2014, having fallen 15 points from 90 to 75 per cent. The proportion of Chinese who see Japan’s influence as positive has increased by 17 points, to 22 per cent.

In Europe, views are the most positive in France and the UK. In France, positive opinion has strengthened, growing by 16 points to 74 per cent, and negative views have fallen by 13 points to 21 per cent. British positive attitudes remain unchanged at 65 per cent, while negative attitudes have increased by six points to 30 per cent. In Greece and Germany, similar proportions view Japan’s influence positively (52% and 50%, respectively), but the mood in Germany has gotten much warmer, with positive attitudes surging by 22 points, and negative attitudes dropping 33 points to just 13 per cent. Though 2013 and 2014 saw the most unfavourable German attitudes towards Japan since tracking began in 2006, attitudes have strongly reversed, and opinion is now at its most favourable. Spain, however, bucks this generally favourable picture. Unfavourable views of Japanese influence have gone up by six points to 36 per cent, while positive views have declined by seven points, to 36 per cent. This increasingly polarised view has shifted Spain from leaning positively in 2014 to being of divided opinion now.

In peripheral Europe, one in two among Turkish respondents views Japan positively (50%, up by 10 points), but the proportion seeing it negatively has also risen (32%, up by 14 points). Russian perceptions are stable and generally positive, with favourable views at just under half (45%), and negative views rising slightly to 16 per cent.

In North America, favourable views of Japan’s influence have increased considerably in Canada, which now has the second most favourable attitude of all the countries surveyed (following Australia). Positive opinion has increased by 19 points to 77 per cent, and negative opinion has dropped by 18 points to 12 per cent. Favourable attitudes towards Japan are now more prevalent than in any previous survey year. Perceptions of Japan’s influence among US respondents are stable, with two-thirds (65%) holding positive views and roughly a quarter (23%) holding negative views.

Views of Japan’s influence are also favourable in Latin America. In Brazil, positive perceptions remain stable at 70 per cent, and negative perceptions have fallen slightly, to 15 per cent. Positive opinion in Mexico has increased significantly, from 38 to 59 per cent, while negative views are steady at 23 per cent. Opinion is similar in Peru, with positive ratings largely unchanged at 56 per cent, and negative ratings climbing slightly, up by six points to 25 per cent.

In Africa, Kenyans and Nigerians hold almost identical views of Japanese influence, with 58 and 57 per cent reporting positive views, respectively. However, this proportion is up in Kenya (by 13 points), whereas it has decreased by 15 points in Nigeria. Nigerians are also more likely to offer negative opinions compared to 2014 (24%, up by 15 points), while this proportion is quite stable in Kenya (at 22%).

 


 

Pakistan

Pakistan


Views of Pakistan’s influence remain largely unfavourable overall, though they have improved since 2014 following a historic low point in a number of countries. On average, across the 17 tracking countries polled in both 2014 and 2017, 58 per cent of respondents have a negative opinion of Pakistan’s influence in the world (down by 2 points since 2014), while 18 per cent view this influence favourably (up from 16% in 2014).

Pakistan is the third most-negatively viewed country in the survey, an improvement from its position in 2014, when it tied with Iran at the bottom. Of the 19 countries surveyed, 15 lean negatively in their perceptions of Pakistani influence, two are divided (Kenya and China), and two lean positively (Indonesia, and Pakistan itself).

Among the countries surveyed, India takes the darkest view of Pakistan’s influence, and this bleak view is now at its most negative since tracking began in 2008. Negative views of Pakistan in India have surged by 36 points to 85 per cent in 2017, the largest such increase among all of the countries surveyed. Just 5 per cent of Indians see Pakistani influence in a positive light, a decline of 12 points. In other parts of Asia, however, attitudes have improved. A stable plurality remains favourably minded in Indonesia (38%), with negative perceptions falling 9 points to 22 per cent. In China, views have warmed substantially, shifting from being largely negative in 2014 to being divided in 2017 following a 26-point increase in positive opinion to 47 per cent, with negative views largely unchanged at 44 per cent. This warm Chinese opinion is the most positive view among the surveyed countries, and matches Pakistan’s own opinion of itself. Australians, however, remain overwhelmingly negative in their opinion, though less so than in 2014. Negative opinion has dropped by 14 points to 63 per cent, while positive opinion has climbed slightly to 18 per cent.

Opinion in Russia is generally negative, but the proportion of Russians offering negative views has decreased by 13 points to 40 per cent since 2014, when negative perceptions were at the highest level since tracking began in 2008. Positive opinion, however, remains very low, at just 10 per cent. In Muslim Turkey, public opinion is certainly warmer, with almost three in ten (29%) reporting a positive view of Pakistani influence—but a higher (and increasing) proportion of Turkish respondents continues to offer a negative opinion (48%, up by 7 points).

In EU countries, attitudes towards Pakistan remain predominately unfavourable, although some overall improvement is seen. Although almost no Germans view Pakistan’s influence positively (1%, the lowest proportion of all the countries surveyed), negative attitudes have decreased more than in any other country since 2014, dropping 33 points from 80 to 47 per cent. A majority of German respondents (52%) now express no solid opinion about Pakistani influence. In the UK, negative views have fallen by nine points to 62 per cent, while positive views have increased to 28 per cent (up by 10 points). In France, negative opinion has decreased slightly, dropping by five points to 72 per cent, while positive opinion has increased by six points to 16 per cent. In Spain, negative attitudes have also decreased, dropping 12 points to 59 per cent, and are now the least negative since tracking began in 2008. Still, just five per cent of Spanish respondents have a favourable view of Pakistan’s role in the world. Figures are similar in Greece, where four per cent view Pakistan’s influence positively, and three in five (58%) view it negatively.

In North America, perceptions of Pakistan’s influence have also taken a less negative turn since 2014, when unfavourable views of Pakistan were at their highest since tracking began in 2008 in both the US and Canada. Negative attitudes among Americans and Canadians are reported by strong majorities, yet not as a substantially so as in 2014 (71%, down by 14 points in the US; 67%, down by 12 points in Canada). Positive views of Pakistan amount to 14 per cent in both countries (which represents a 9-point gain in the US).

On the other hand, negative opinion continues to rise in Latin American countries, reaching historical highs. In Brazil, negative opinion has increased by six points to 81 per cent (second only to India), while positive opinion remains largely unchanged and extremely low (5%). Mexican views have also deteriorated since 2014, accounted for by a 21-point increase in negative ratings to almost two-thirds (65%) and slightly declining positive opinion (now at 10%). A similar pattern is seen in Peru, where negative views among Peruvians have gone up by 12 points to 59 per cent, and positive views have remained relatively unchanged at 9 per cent.

Views of Pakistani influence differ in the two African countries surveyed. Opinion has become more negative in Nigeria, where positive views have halved to 19 per cent since 2014, and negative views have increased by 16 points to 62 per cent (the most negative impression of Pakistan among Nigerians since tracking began in 2008). In Kenya, however, opinion has taken a marked turn for the better, shifting from leaning negative in 2014 (23% positive vs 45% negative) to being divided in 2017 (36% positive vs 35% negative).

 


 

India

India


Global perceptions of India’s influence are narrowly negative in 2017, and have remained fairly stable since 2014. On average across the 16 tracking countries surveyed in both 2014 and 2017, over one-third of respondents (37%, down by 1 point) have a positive view of India’s influence in the world. This proportion is slightly outnumbered by those who report negative views (39%, stable).

India ties for ninth place out of 17 (with South Korea) in the ranking of positively-viewed nations: in 2014, they were tied at eleventh place. Of the 18 countries surveyed in 2017 (including India), nine lean positively in their views of India, eight lean negatively, and one is divided (Canada).

Attitudes towards India’s influence are diverse in Asia, with increasingly favourable opinions in Australia and Indonesia, and increasingly unfavourable opinions in China and Pakistan. In a parallel to India’s opinion of Pakistan, Pakistani views towards India have taken a negative turn since 2014, becoming the most unfavourable since tracking began in 2010. While negative sentiment is largely unchanged at three in five (62%, the least favourable of all the countries surveyed), positive opinion has halved to 11 per cent. Negative opinion has also surged in China, from 35 to 56 per cent, but positive ratings are also up (35%, a rise of 8 points). In contrast, Australian opinion has warmed, shifting from being divided in 2014 to leaning positively in 2017. Almost half of Australians (49%, up by 5 points) hold positive views of India, while negative views have fallen from 46 per cent to about one-third (34%). Indonesians are also very favourable towards India: 50 per cent report positive views (stable), while 18 per cent express a negative opinion (18%, down by 6 points).

North American views are stable. Canadian views are divided, with positive and negative opinions largely unchanged at 41 per cent and 44 per cent, respectively. In the US, however, nearly half (49%) continue to have a favourable perception of Indian influence, while 37 per cent report a negative opinion.

In the two Latin American countries surveyed, views diverge. Mexican attitudes have improved since 2014, with an increase of 16 points in positive views to 42 per cent (the largest increase of all countries surveyed), and the proportion expressing negative opinion relatively unchanged at 33 per cent. Mexican opinion has thus moved from leaning negatively to leaning positively. On the other hand, Brazilian opinion has taken the opposite course. Slightly positive in 2014 (41% positive vs. 36% negative), opinion now leans negatively following a severe drop in positive opinion (down by 18 points, to 23%), and a surge in unfavourable ratings, which rose from 36 to 57 per cent (a historical high since tracking began).

In Europe, the UK has the most favourable view of India’s influence of all countries surveyed, and is the only country in Europe to have a generally positive opinion. Divided in 2014, the British opinion has shifted noticeably: a majority of 56 per cent give India a positive rating of (up by 11 points), while 38 per cent hold negative views (down by 8 points). In Germany, negative views have plummeted from 68 per cent in 2014 (when negative opinion was at its highest since tracking began in 2006) to just 33 per cent in 2017. However, positive views have also decreased, falling by 15 points to a negligible 1 per cent, and leaving a majority of Germans undecided in their view of India. Negative attitudes in Spain have fallen 15 points to 35 per cent, while positive views remain stable at about one in five (23%). In Greece, nearly three in ten (27%) see India’s influence negatively, while two in ten (19%) see it positively. Indecision on this question is very high in Spain and Greece, with pluralities of 42 per cent and 54 per cent respectively unwilling to take a clear stance. French opinion remains negative and relatively unchanged since 2014, with unfavourable views at roughly half (53%), and positive views at two in five (39%).

In peripheral Europe, attitudes in Turkey have soured since 2014, shifting from being divided in 2014 to leaning negatively in 2017. This change is owing to a 15-point increase in negative views, to 44 per cent, while positive views have remained stable at about a third (32%). In Russia, opinion is largely unchanged and favourable: a plurality express positive views (41%), while only 10 per cent post negative ratings. Nearly half of Russian respondents, however, are undecided in their views of India (49%).

Opinions in the two African nations surveyed continue to lean positively. In Nigeria, however, perceptions have cooled since 2014 and are becoming more polarised. The proportion of positive ratings is at its the lowest level since 2010, following a 17-point drop to 47 per cent. Negative attitudes have climbed 17 points, to 39 per cent. Both positive and negative views are stable in Kenya, at 48 per cent and 26 per cent, respectively.

 


 

Iran

Iran


Iran’s influence continues to be perceived very negatively in almost all of the 18 countries surveyed in both 2014 and 2017, with average proportions of 61 per cent expressing a negative opinion (the same as in 2014), and just 15 per cent expressing a positive opinion (down by 1 point).

Iran is the most-negatively viewed country in the survey. Among the surveyed nations, only respondents in Pakistan see Iran in a (mildly) positive light. Responses in Indonesia are divided, but all the other surveyed countries express a negative opinion of Iran’s influence in the world.

Perceptions of Iran’s influence have improved in Russia, with a decline in negative opinion from almost half (49%, the harshest negative ratings of Iran since tracking began in 2006) to just one-third (35%). Positive opinion, however, remains very low (and stable) at 12 per cent. By contrast, opinion in neighbouring Turkey has worsened, with unfavourable attitudes jumping from 46 to 62 per cent, and the proportion of positive ratings falling five points to 19 per cent.

While opinion remains very negative in Europe, it has improved a little since 2014. In Germany, negative responses have fallen the most in all of the countries polled, dropping by 33 points to 52 per cent. Although these are the least negative German views of Iran since tracking began in 2006, favourable opinion remains extremely low (1%, stable). Germans are increasingly undecided towards Iran, with 47 per cent not expressing a solid opinion either way on this question. In France, negative opinion has also dropped, falling from 84 to 72 per cent since 2014, while positive views have gone up by nine points to 17 per cent. The trend is similar in the UK, with negative views at 75 per cent (down by 8 points) and positive views at 17 per cent (up by 10 points). Views in Spain have remained steady, and are the most negative in Europe: three-quarters of Spanish respondents (76%) see Iran in a negative light, and just 4 per cent see it in a positive one. Greek opinion of Iran’s influence is the least negative in Europe, although a majority still disapproves (51%), with just 8 per cent expressing a positive opinion.

Views towards Iran in North America, although slightly improved since 2014 (especially in the US), are still among the most negative surveyed. More than eight in ten Americans have a negative opinion of Iranian influence (82%, down by 6 points), while one in ten offers a positive opinion (9%, stable). In Canada, negative views have fallen by ten points to 73 per cent, while positive views have somewhat increased to 11 per cent (up by 5 points). These results represent an improvement from 2014, when unfavourable opinion in both countries was at its highest level since tracking began in 2006.

In the three Latin American countries polled, negative perceptions of Iran’s influence are the highest they have been since tracking began. Brazilians have very unfavourable views of Iran: as in the US, 82 per cent express negative views, but even fewer than in the US (just 5%) express positive ones (both stable proportions). In Peru, negative perceptions have jumped 19 points from about half (46%) to almost two-thirds (65%), as positive views have remained stable at 10 per cent. The picture is very similar in Mexico, where negative opinion has risen by 15 points to 64 per cent against low positive ratings (13%, stable).

In the surveyed countries in Africa, perceptions have soured in Nigeria, but have improved in Kenya. The proportion of Nigerians holding negative views has increased to 68 per cent (up by 14 points)—the highest level since tracking began in 2006—while positive views have decreased from 29 to 15 per cent. In contrast, Kenyan negative opinion has fallen by 8 points to 54 per cent, while positive opinion has remained relatively stable at 20 per cent.

In Asia, no clear trend connects the surveyed countries. In Pakistan, the only country with a plurality leaning positively towards Iran’s influence, the mood has nonetheless cooled significantly as the proportion of positive ratings has collapsed from 51 to 30 per cent, while negative views hover at around one in four (23%). In Indonesia, opinion remains divided, with about a third expressing positive views (33%, down by 7 points), and a similar proportion expressing negative views (30%, down by 5 points). China shows the largest increase in negative opinion towards Iran of all the surveyed countries, with an increase of 25 points to 65 per cent. This is the highest level of negative Chinese opinion toward Iran since tracking began in 2006. Nonetheless, positive opinion has increased by seven points (to 25%). In India, perceptions of Iran have also cooled, although not to the same extent. Indian negative opinion has increased by six points to 43 per cent, while positive opinion has held stable at 22 per cent. Views among Australians are similar to those in other English-speaking nations and are the most negative in Asia: more than seven in ten state a negative attitude (72%, down by 6 points), while one in ten speak favourably of Iran (11%, stable).

 


 

South Africa

South Africa


Global opinion of South Africa’s influence is narrowly positive in 2017, although less so than in 2014. On average, across the 18 tracking countries surveyed in both 2014 and 2017, 36 per cent of respondents hold favourable attitudes towards South Africa, down by 3 points since 2014. Negative views are expressed by 33 per cent, with an equal proportion undecided (31%).

South Africa ranks eleventh out of 17 in the list of most-positively rated countries, a fall of two places since 2014. Of the 19 countries surveyed in 2017, eight lean positively towards South Africa, six lean negatively, and five are divided in their opinions.

Perceptions of South Africa in the two African countries surveyed remain largely positive. Two-thirds of Kenyans (67%) express a favourable view, a drop of four points since 2014 but still the highest proportion in all the countries surveyed. Meanwhile, negative ratings have gone up six points, to 18 per cent. In Nigeria, a majority remains positive, but by a smaller margin than in 2014, with favour dropping by 12 points to 53 per cent—the lowest value since tracking began in 2009. The proportion expressing a negative opinion has increased by ten points, to 27 per cent.

In Asia, Indians report the most favourable opinion of South Africa since tracking began. A plurality of 37 per cent think well of South African influence, while negative views have fallen by seven points to 16 per cent; half, however, take no clear position on this question (47%). Australians are divided in their opinion (42% positive vs. 38% negative), having shifted from leaning negatively in 2014 due to an eight-point decline in negative ratings. Opinion has become less conclusive in Pakistan and Indonesia, and is divided in both countries. In Pakistan, both positive and negative attitudes have decreased, with approval dropping by nine points to one-fifth (20%), and disapproval slipping by eight points to a similar proportion (19%). A majority of Pakistanis express no clear opinion. Similarly, in Indonesia, negative views have decreased by 10 points to one-quarter (26%), while positive views are largely unchanged at three in ten (29%). The Chinese, in contrast, have become more polarised in their opinion, as both positive and negative opinions have increased: positive attitudes have gone up by 27 points to 49 per cent, while negative attitudes have increased by eight points to 42 per cent.

European nations express diverse views of South Africa’s influence. In France, attitudes are largely unchanged and remain the most positive towards South Africa in Europe, with positive opinion at 55 per cent and negative opinion at 32 per cent. Opinion in the UK is stable and somewhat positive (48% positive vs. 42% negative). German opinion has changed sharply compared to 2014, when a majority held negative views. This disapproval has tumbled 40 points, to 19 per cent—but positive opinion has also fallen steeply, down by 14 points to 9 per cent. Fully 72 per cent of Germans state no strong opinion about South Africa’s role in the world. This pattern of vague opinion continues in Spain, where positive opinion stands at 20 per cent (down by 14 points), negative opinion is at 34 per cent (stable), and a large plurality (46%), expresses no strong opinion. Greece shows a similar pattern, with 19 per cent positive, 23 per cent negative, and 58 percent not stating a strong view.

In North America, attitudes towards South Africa are weakly positive, and quite stable. In the US, The proportion of positive and negative opinion remains stable in the US at 44 per cent, and 34 per cent hold a negative opinion (stable). Canadian views are very similar, with positive opinion at 41 per cent and negative opinion at 35 per cent (both stable).

Opinion in Latin American countries is at odds with North America, and negative overall. In Brazil, opinion has shifted strongly since 2014, from leaning positively to being strongly negative this year. The proportion of negative opinion among Brazilians has more than doubled to two-thirds (65%, the most unfavourable in all the countries surveyed), while positive views have fallen by 28 points to 19 per cent. In Peru, negative attitudes have risen as well, from 33 to 39 per cent, while positive ratings have remained stable at a quarter (26%). In both countries, this is the most unfavourable perception of South Africa since tracking began in 2010 and 2011, respectively. In Mexico, opinion has warmed from leaning negatively in 2014. While negative opinion remains stable at 38 per cent, positive views have increased by 13 points to a similar proportion (37%), leaving Mexican opinion divided overall.

 


 

Israel

Israel

 

Israel’s influence in the world continues to be viewed very negatively overall. On average, across the 18 tracking countries surveyed in both 2014 and 2017, half of respondents (50%) have a negative opinion, double the proportion holding a positive opinion (25%).

Global opinion has not changed dramatically since 2014, and Israel remains the fourth most-negatively viewed country out of the 17 countries in the ranking. Of the 19 countries participating in the survey in 2017, 15 lean negatively in their opinion of Israel’s influence, while four lean positively.

US opinion towards Israel is the most positive among the countries surveyed, and is at its most favourable level since tracking began in 2007, with almost six in ten reporting a positive opinion (59%, up by 7 points) and fewer than three in ten offering a negative opinion (28%, down by 8 points). Although attitudes have also improved in Canada, they remain generally unfavourable, with more than half of Canadians viewing Israel’s influence negatively (52%, stable), and a third viewing it positively (35%, up by 5 points).

Perceptions of Israel remain largely negative in Europe, although this negativity has softened since 2014. This is especially true in Germany, which reports the largest fall in negative opinion, dropping from two-thirds (67%) in 2014 to just over one-third (36%) in 2017. However, positive opinion remains extremely low at 7 per cent (the lowest rating in all of the countries surveyed). A similar pattern is seen in the UK, where negative views have fallen from 72 per cent to 66 per cent, and positive views have risen from 19 to 25 per cent. Opinion has also become more favourable in France, with negative views at 62 per cent and a seven-point increase in positive attitudes to 28 per cent. Spanish opinion is relatively unchanged from 2014 (60% negative vs. 11% positive). In Greece, one-fifth (19%) see Israel positively, but more than third (35%) express a negative view.

Among the countries polled, opinion of Israel is harshest in Turkey. Since 2014, Turkish negative ratings have surged 33 points to over three-quarters (77%), while positive views have fallen by 7 points to 10 per cent. In contrast, opinion has improved in Russia, with positive views increasing slightly (34%, up by 6 points), and negative views holding with little change at one-fifth (20%). Almost half of all Russians, however, express no strong opinion (46%).

In Africa, both surveyed countries lean positively towards Israeli influence. Kenya holds the second-most favourable view of Israel’s influence after the US, with 46 per cent (stable) expressing approval and 26 per cent (also stable) offering a negative opinion. Opinion in Nigeria, mostly negative in 2014 (33% positive vs. 46% negative), has flipped, with nearly half (45%) now seeing Israel positively, and fewer than four in ten (37%) now offering a negative view.

In Asia, attitudes towards Israel have moved in different trajectories, but remain negative overall. In China, positive opinion has seen the largest rise among the nations polled, increasing by 21 points to 34 per cent since 2014, when overall opinion was at its least favourable since 2007. Nonetheless, negative opinion has also increased 57 per cent (a rise of 8 points). Australians report similar figures, with positive ratings up by seven points to 31 per cent—a historical high in this survey—and negative ratings down by 11 points to 56 per cent. Both positive and negative opinion have declined in Pakistan, with the former decreasing by six points (to 10%) and the latter falling by 11 points to half (49%). This is the most favourable Pakistani position towards Israel since tracking began in 2007. In Indonesia, negative opinion has also fallen, although it remains high at 64 per cent (down by 11 points). Positive opinion is relatively unchanged, and low, at 9 per cent. In India, negative ratings are now at their highest level since tracking began (40%, up by 6 points since 2014), while positive opinion is stable at one in five (21%).

Views of Israel’s influence have deteriorated in Latin America. Mexico shows the second largest increase in negative opinion after Turkey, rising from 45 per cent to nearly two-thirds (63%), while positive opinion has remained low and quite stable at 16 per cent. The figures are similar in Brazil: 61 per cent hold negative views, and 16 per cent offer positive views (down by 5 points). Half of Peruvian respondents (50%, up by 9 points) offer a negative impression of Israel’s influence, while a fifth (20%, stable) hold a positive view. In Mexico and Peru, unfavourable perceptions are at their highest levels since tracking began in 2007.

 


 

North Korea

North Korea


Attitudes towards North Korea’s influence are very negative among the 18 countries surveyed in both 2014 and 2017, and have generally deteriorated. On average, three out of five respondents (59%, up by 3 points) express a negative opinion, and less than one-fifth (17%, down by 1 point) hold a positive opinion.

North Korea is ranked as the second most-negatively viewed country of out of the 17 tested, after Iran. Among the 19 countries surveyed in 2017, every single one sees North Korea’s influence in the world as negative. North Korea is the only country in the survey for which this is true.

US views of North Korea are especially negative, with almost nine in ten (88%) reporting a negative opinion of the Pyongyang regime, and just 5 per cent stating a favourable view. This is consistent with American opinion in 2014. In Canada, the picture is similar, with positive and negative opinions relatively unchanged from 2014 (10% positive vs. 81% negative).

The UK has one of the most negative opinions of North Korea among the nations polled, with nine in ten expressing disapproval (89%, up by 6 points), and just 7 per cent offering a positive opinion (stable). Perceptions have also deteriorated in France, with a six-point increase in negative opinion to 85 per cent, and stable positive opinion at 9 per cent. Unfavourable views are at their highest level here since tracking began in 2007. Attitudes towards North Korea are stable in Spain, with three-quarters (75%) reporting a negative perception, and just 5 per cent reporting a positive view. Opinion is somewhat less negative in Greece, but almost two-thirds of Greek respondents (64%) view North Korea unfavourably, while just 6 per cent offer a positive opinion. On the other hand, attitudes have become more neutral in Germany, with the proportion offering negative opinions falling by 29 points, to 56 per cent. However, positive opinion is at just 1 per cent, so this drop in negative ratings reflects increased uncertainty, not favour.

Views of North Korean influence have deteriorated sharply in Turkey, with negative attitudes surging 25 points to nearly half (44%), while positive opinion is largely unchanged at a third (34%). Opinion now leans negatively, a reversal from 2014, when Turkish respondents gave their most positive rating of North Korea since tracking began in 2007. Still, Turkey’s favourable opinion is the strongest expressed in the survey. In Russia, attitudes have warmed a little: positive opinion is stable at two in ten (20%), but negative opinion has diminished by seven points, to 30 per cent.

Perceptions have soured in most of the Asian countries surveyed. In neighbouring China (Pyongyang’s closest ally), negative opinion has increased the most among all the countries polled, growing by 30 points to three-quarters (76%), while positive opinion has remained stable at one-fifth (19%). In India, negative views have increased by 13 points to two in five (40%), while positive opinion holds stable at one in five (19%). In Indonesia, negative opinion is relatively unchanged since 2014 at about half (46%), but positive views have fallen by 11 points to 17 per cent. In China, India, and Indonesia, these are the least favourable views of North Korea’s influence since tracking began in 2007. Australians hold the most unfavourable opinion of North Korea in Asia, with 87 per cent presenting a negative opinion and just 6 per cent offering a positive one (both stable). Pakistan is by far the least decided country in terms of its perceptions of North Korean influence. More than half (55%) take no position. Among those who do express an opinion, the proportion who disapprove (25%, down by 7 points) slightly outweighs that which holds a favourable view (20%, down by 8 points).

African positive opinion is comparatively high, exceeded only in Turkey, but has declined since 2014, with positive ratings falling by 9 points to a third (33%) in Nigeria and by 7 points to 27 per cent in Kenya. Divided in their views in 2014, both countries now offer predominately negative views of North Korea, with disapproval at 42 per cent and 36 per cent, respectively (stable since 2014) .

In Latin America, respondents hold fairly similar, negative views of North Korea overall. Brazilian respondents offer a darker view than in 2014, with a six-point increase in negative views to 60 per cent, and positive views stable at about one in five (23%). In Peru, positive and negative views are largely unchanged at a fifth (22%) and half (51%), respectively. Both positive and negative opinions have increased in Mexico; positive views have risen by 11 points to a quarter (24%), while negative views have increased by seven points to more than half (54%).

 


 

France

France


Perceptions of French influence have improved significantly in the 17 countries surveyed in 2014 and 2017. On average, more than half of respondents (52%) have a positive opinion of French influence in the world, and fewer than one-quarter (23%) disapprove. In 2014, 48 per cent gave positive ratings, and 24 per cent disapproved.

In its ranking among the most-favourably viewed countries in the survey, France now holds fourth place, up one position since 2014. Of the 19 countries surveyed in 2017 (including France), all report a generally favourable impression of France’s influence except Pakistan (where opinion is divided) and Turkey (where it is slightly negative).

In fellow EU nations, opinion of France is very positive. In the UK, positive opinion has increased slightly to two-thirds (66%, up by 5 points), while negative opinion is largely unchanged at three in ten (29%). This is the highest proportion of favourable ratings towards France among the British since tracking began in 2005. German views have also improved, with positive opinion increasing by nine points to 56 per cent, and negative views falling steeply from one-quarter in 2014 (24%) to just 6 per cent now—the lowest negative rating among all the countries surveyed. Half in Greece (50%) see France positively, and just one in ten (11%) sees it negatively. Spanish opinion is steady but less favourable than in the other EU members surveyed, with positive and negative perceptions at 44 per cent and 26 per cent, respectively.

At Europe’s edge, Turkish views have shifted since 2014 and are again leaning negatively, after a generally positive rating emerged for the first time in 2014. Positive opinion of French influence among Turkish respondents remains relatively unchanged at almost two in five (38%), but the proportion expressing a negative opinion has increased the most of all the countries polled, leaping 14 points to 43 per cent. Meanwhile, opinion has also deteriorated in Russia, which reports the largest fall in positive views, from half (51%) to about a third (35%), while negative perceptions have risen by nine points to 22 per cent. Traditionally strongly positive, Russian ratings of French influence in the world are now at a historical low level for this survey.

Attitudes towards France are among the most favourable in North America, and have strengthened since 2014. Canadians share with China the most positive impression of France among the nations surveyed, with almost three-quarters stating a positive opinion (74%, up by 10 points). Only 14 per cent of Canadians (down by 6 points) express a negative opinion of France. In the US, positive opinion has increased solidly, from 55 to 66 per cent, while negative opinion has decreased by seven points, to 19 per cent. In both countries, perceptions are at their most favourable level since tracking began in 2005.

Positive opinion towards France has increased the most in China, surging from half (47%) to three-quarters (74%), while the proportion of Chinese holding negative views has decreased to 16 per cent (down by 11 points). Australian opinion has also improved, with an increase in positive views to almost seven in ten (69%, up by 12 points), while negative views are relatively stable at one-quarter (23%). Opinion in the other surveyed Asian countries is more muted, with pluralities not taking a clear stance on their views of France. Positive opinion in India is stable at 37 per cent, while negative opinion has somewhat decreased (20%, down by 5 points); a plurality of Indians are undecided (43%). While overall opinion has warmed in Pakistan, nearly half of Pakistanis (49%) are neither positive nor negative in their views of France’s influence; a quarter approve (25%, down by 5 points), and a similar proportion disapprove (26%, down by 12 points). Indonesia is the only Asian nation where opinion has clearly soured, with a 15-point drop in positive views (to 31%) and stable negative views at about a quarter (26%). As with respondents in India and Pakistan, a plurality of Indonesians express no strong view (49%).

Views of France in the three Latin American countries surveyed are positive. Mexican views have improved strongly, and show the largest increase in positive opinion after China, rising 22 points to over half (56%). While negative views continue to hover at a quarter (24%), this is the most favourable impression of France among Mexicans overall since tracking began. Brazilian views are similar, but unchanged since 2014 (59% positive vs. 19% negative). In Peru, perceptions have deteriorated slightly: while positive opinion is stable at almost half of respondents (47%), negative opinion has increased by nine points to one-quarter (25%).

In Africa, Nigerian and Kenyan perceptions are very similar to one another and little changed from 2014, with over half in both countries seeing France positively (55% in Nigeria, 53% in Kenya), and negative views stable at 24 per cent and 21 per cent, respectively.

 


 

China

China


Globally, perceptions of China’s influence have deteriorated slightly since 2014, and are divided. On average, across the 17 tracking countries polled in both 2014 and 2017, the proportion of respondents expressing favourable views of China stands at 41 per cent (down by 2 points), and the proportion with negative views is at 42 per cent (up by 2 points). In several countries, however, unfavourable opinion is at the highest levels yet recorded in this survey.

In terms of positive views, China ranks seventh of the 17 countries rated, moving up one place from 2014. Of the 19 countries surveyed (including China), nine lean positively in their opinion of China’s influence, one is divided (Australia), and nine lean negatively.

Opinion is generally negative in Asia, and has deteriorated since 2014, particularly in India. Negative views among Indian respondents have increased by 25 points to 60 per cent, and positive views have dropped by 14 points to 19 per cent. Divided in 2014, overall Indian opinion is now strongly negative, and is at its most unfavourable towards China since tracking began in 2005. Worsening views of China are also apparent among Indonesians, where overall opinion has flipped since 2014: negative opinion has risen by 22 points to 50 per cent, while positive opinion has dropped 24 points to 28 per cent. For the first time since tracking began in 2005, a majority of Indonesians disapprove of China’s role in the world. Australian opinion remains divided and largely unchanged, with negative opinion at 47 per cent and positive opinion at 46 per cent. On the other hand, Pakistani perceptions of China’s influence continue to be very favourable: despite a drop of 12 points, positive views are still at 63 per cent, while negative ratings have remained stable at 12 per cent.

Within the EU, perceptions of China’s influence are generally quite negative. Spanish negative opinion is the most decisive, and has risen to 68 per cent (up by 9 points), while positive opinion has fallen to 15 per cent (down by 9 points). This constitutes the least favourable rating of China among all the countries polled. In the UK, views have shifted from being divided in 2014 to leaning negatively in 2017. Negative perceptions among British respondents have increased from 46 to 58 per cent, while positive attitudes have decreased by 12 points to 37 per cent, producing the most unfavourable British rating of China since tracking began in 2005. By contrast, attitudes towards China in Germany have warmed a great deal. Germany shows the largest fall in negative opinion among all the countries surveyed, with a drop of 41 points to 35 per cent, while positive opinion has doubled to 20 per cent. In France, views have improved but remain negative overall: negative ratings have decreased by 8 points to 60 per cent, while positive attitudes have increased by 9 points to over a third (35%). Greece is the only European country leaning positively in its view of China’s influence, with a plurality of 37 per cent holding a positive opinion (vs. 25% who offer a negative opinion).

In Turkey, negative opinion of China has surged, rising by 23 points to 54 per cent, while positive views are stable at three in ten (29%). Perceptions are largely unchanged in Russia, where a plurality remains positive towards China’s influence (44%), with just under one-quarter (23%) viewing it as negative.

North American views of China remain negative, especially in the US. Americans present the most negative opinion in all of the countries polled, with seven in ten (70%) having a negative view and just two in ten (22%) offering a positive opinion (both fairly stable). However, perceptions have improved in Canada, with a lower proportion than in 2014 reporting negative views (51%, down by 13 points), and a higher proportion expressing a positive view (37%, up by 9 points).

Attitudes towards China have evolved in different directions since 2014 in Latin America, but they remain generally positive. Mexican views have shifted from being fairly negative to a comfortably positive position in 2017, following a 22-point rise in approval and a 14-point fall in disapproval. While 26 per cent remain negative about China’s influence, the 55 per cent who are positive represent the highest proportion recorded in Mexico since tracking began in 2005. In Peru and Brazil, pluralities of 49 and 45 per cent respectively view China’s influence in the world positively. However, these ratings have softened since 2014 (down by 5 points in Peru and by 7 points in Brazil). Negative views have increased in both countries as well, by 10 points to one-third (34%) among Peruvians, and by 9 points (to 38%) among Brazilians.

African views of China’s influence, as in 2014, are generally positive. Positive opinion in Nigeria is stable at 83 per cent, with negative views at 9 per cent. This is the highest level of approval among the countries polled (except in China itself, where self-approval stands at 88%). In Kenya, both positive and negative views remain stable at 63 per cent and 27 per cent, respectively.

 


 

Brazil

Brazil


Global perceptions of Brazil’s influence lean positively overall, although they have deteriorated sharply since 2014. On average, across the 16 tracking countries surveyed in both 2014 and 2017, the proportion of respondents holding a positive opinion has fallen to 38 per cent (from 44% in 2014), while the proportion offering a negative view has gone up by 2 points to 30 per cent. Of the 18 countries surveyed in 2017 (including Brazil), eight lean positively in their opinion of Brazil’s influence, five are divided, and five lean negatively.

Brazil ranks as the eighth most-favourably viewed of the 17 nations rated, a drop of one position from 2014.

Despite the observed overall decline, views of Brazil’s influence have improved in its fellow BRIC nations. China shows the largest increase in favourable views since 2014, and has the most positive view of Brazil among the countries surveyed, with over half (57%, up by 23 points) offering a positive opinion, and one-third (34%, up by 6 points) offering a negative one. Opinion is stable in Russia, with more than one-third (36%) holding positive views and fewer than one in ten (9%) holding negative ones—the lowest proportion among all of the countries surveyed. It should be noted, however, that a majority of Russians (55%) are undecided in their opinion. This neutral proportion is also high among Indians (47%), where positive opinion remains stable at almost one-third (32%), while negative opinion has decreased slightly from 26 to 21 per cent.

Positive perceptions have stumbled in Indonesia, Australia, and Pakistan, and are now the least favourable they have been since tracking began (in 2008, 2010 for Pakistan). Although views remain positive overall, positive ratings of Brazil have plunged in Indonesia, dropping 20 points to just above one-third (36%), while negative ratings are stable at 19 per cent. Positive opinion has also fallen in Australia, with a 12-point drop to 37 per cent. With negative opinion largely unchanged at the same proportion (37%), Australians are now divided in their opinion after leaning positively in 2014. In Pakistan, both positive and negative opinion have decreased, with the majority now undecided in their views of Brazil: only 16 per cent of Pakistanis offer a positive opinion (down by 10 points), while 23 per cent offer a negative opinion (down by 9 points). Fully 61 per cent offer no strong opinion.

In Latin America, Peruvian views of Brazil’s influence have soured. Although opinion still leans positively, with 48 per cent posting positive views, this is down by 13 points compared to 2014, and almost a third of Peruvians now offer negative ratings (31%, up by 14 points). This is the least favourable Peruvian opinion of Brazil since tracking began in 2011. Tellingly, Brazilians’ opinion about their own country’s influence has become much more negative than before, and Brazilians now offer the most unfavourable view of their own country. Only one in three Brazilians (30%) rates Brazil favourably, a deep collapse since 2014 (when it was 66%) and from the tracking high-point in 2012 (88%). A majority of Brazilians now views Brazil’s influence in the world negatively (64%, up by 46 points).

In North America, perceptions have also taken a negative turn, marking the first time that views of Brazil do not lean strongly positively in the US and Canada. Positive opinion has decreased by 15 points to two in five (40%) in the US, and negative opinion has increased by 16 points to a similar proportion (39%); American opinion about Brazil is now divided. The figures are quite similar in Canada, although Canadians remain narrowly positive, with two in five (41%, down by 15 points) offering a positive opinion of Brazil, and 36 per cent (up by 12 points) offering a negative one.

In Africa, majorities in Nigeria and Kenya remain positive towards Brazil (52% and 50%, respectively, but down by 7 points in Nigeria). However, negative opinion is at its highest since tracking began in 2008, with about three in ten (31%, up by 6 points) having an unfavourable opinion in Nigeria, and one-quarter (25%, up by 7 points) holding unfavourable views in Kenya.

In Europe, France and the UK report exactly the same, divided result, with 46 per cent of respondents approving of Brazil’s role in the world, and 43 per cent disapproving. In the UK, these views are largely unchanged from 2014, but they represent a shift in French opinion, which tended to be positive in 2014 (55% positive vs. 32% negative). In the other EU countries surveyed, high proportions are neutral in their views of Brazil, especially in Germany. German opinion has moved from being strongly negative in 2014 (21% positive vs. 59% negative) to being fairly neutral (6% positive, 78% with no stated opinion, and 16% negative). In Spain, opinion leans negatively overall after being divided in 2014, with positive views falling from 35 to 21 per cent, and negative views holding at 39 per cent. Neutral responses make up 40 per cent of the sample. In Greece, half (50%) state no opinion about Brazil’s influence, while two in ten (21%) express a positive opinion, and three in ten (29%) express a negative one. As in 2014, Turkish opinion is also divided (at 38% positive vs. 36% negative).

 


 

South Korea

South Korea

 

Views of South Korean influence are divided globally, and have become slightly less favourable since 2014. On average, across the 18 tracking countries surveyed in both 2014 and 2017, 37 per cent of respondents have a positive opinion (down by 1 point), and 36 per cent express a negative opinion (up by 1 point). In most of the surveyed Asian countries, however, opinion has taken a negative turn.

In terms of positive views, South Korea now ties with India in ninth position out of the 17 rated countries, a modest increase from eleventh position in 2014. Of the 19 countries surveyed in 2017, eight lean positively in their perception of South Korea’s influence, five are divided, and six lean negatively.

Asian views offer a mixed picture, but have become more negative in all surveyed countries except Australia, where opinion is relatively unchanged since 2014. Australia is the most favourably minded of all the countries surveyed, with 61 percent offering positive opinions, and just 24 per cent disapproving of South Korea. Opinion is also generally favourable in Indonesia, although positive views have fallen by 11 points to 37 per cent since 2014; negative opinion remains stable at 23 per cent, and 40 per cent of Indonesians now offer no strong opinion. Perceptions have taken a downturn in Pakistan, with negative opinion stable at 22 per cent and positive opinion having decreased to 19 per cent (a drop of 12 points). The majority of Pakistanis (59%) offer no strong opinion on this question, Perceptions are divided in India (27% positive vs. 28% negative), with 45 per cent of Indians not stating any strong view. China offers a darker picture, and now offers the least favourable view of South Korea among the nations polled. Chinese perceptions have shifted radically since 2014, from being positive to leaning very unfavourably this year. Negative opinion has more than doubled, from 32 to 71 per cent—the largest increase among all the nations polled—and positive opinion has dropped by 15 points over the same period, to 25 per cent.

In Russia, opinion is stable and positive among those who offer a clear view (32% positive vs. 20% negative), but almost half of Russians do not express a strong opinion about South Korea’s influence (48%). In Turkey, opinion has deteriorated since 2014, but remains favourable overall, with stable positive ratings at 39 per cent, and negative ratings at 33 percent (up by 11 points).

In the European Union, attitudes have warmed towards South Korea among the countries surveyed. Views are the most positive in the UK, following an increase in positive opinion of seven points (to 52%), and a decrease of five points in negative opinion (to 40%). Divided in 2014, British opinion about South Korea is now at its highest level since tracking began in 2010. Perceptions have remained divided in France, with nearly half of French respondents (45%) holding a positive opinion and a similar proportion (44%) holding a negative opinion. In Germany, negative views continue to exceed positive ones (32% vs. 11%). However, opinion is much less critical than it was in 2014, as the proportion of unfavourable ratings has fallen by 27 points. Positive ratings have also fallen (by 13 points), leaving a majority of Germans expressing no strong opinion (57%). In Spain, positive opinion is stable at 24 per cent, but negative opinion has fallen by eight points since 2014, to 42 per cent. In Greece, views are narrowly negative among those who have a clear opinion (24% positive vs. 29% negative), but a plurality (47%) offers no strong opinion about South Korea’s influence in the world.

North American attitudes towards South Korea lean positively, and have remained stable since 2014. Just over half in the US (51%) and nearly half in Canada (47%) hold positive opinions of South Korean influence, with approximately one-third in each country offering negative views (33% in the US, 36% in Canada).

Latin American views are not as favourable. Perceptions are largely stable in Peru and Brazil. Opinion remains divided among Peruvians (37% positive vs. 37% negative), and continues to edge into negative territory in Brazil (36% positive vs. 46% negative). Opinion remains slightly negative in Mexico, yet has become more favourable in 2017, after the largest increase in positive views among the nations polled (up by 14 points, to 36%). Negative opinion in Mexico has remained stable (at 42%).

In Africa, Nigerian opinion is favourable and stable, with nearly half (44%) holding positive views, and about one-third (34%) holding negative views. Kenyan attitudes towards South Korea have become divided: while positive opinion is largely unchanged (34%), negative opinion has increased to the same proportion (34%, up by 6 points).

Methodology

In total 17,910 citizens in Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, Greece, India, Indonesia, Kenya, Mexico, Nigeria, Pakistan, Peru, Russia, Spain, Turkey, the UK, and the United States were interviewed face-to-face or by telephone between December 26, 2016 and April 27, 2017. Questions were asked by half samples in all countries polled except in India. Polling was conducted for BBC World Service by GlobeScan and its research partners in each country, together with the Program for Public Consultation (PPC) at the University of Maryland.

In Brazil, China, Indonesia, Kenya, and Turkey urban samples were used. The margin of error per country ranges from +/- 3.1 to 5.2 per cent, 19 times out of 20.

 

Country
Sample Size (unweighted)
Field dates
Sample frame
Survey methodology
Type of sample
Australia 800 February 6–19, 2017 18+ Telephone National
Brazil 810 March 20 – April 10, 2017 18-69 Face-to-face Urban1
Canada 1000 January 27 – February 15, 2017 18+ Telephone National
China 1171 February 24, - April 25, 2017 18+ Telephone Urban2
France 1009 February 6-16, 2017 18+ Telephone National
Germany 1002 January 13–31, 2017 16-70 Telephone National
Greece 709 March 17 – April 19, 2017 18+ Telephone National
India 1018 January 19 – March 23, 2017 18+ Telephone National
Indonesia 1000 March 8–22, 2017 18+ Face-to-face Urban3
Kenya 1010 February 1–15, 2017 18+ Face-to-face Urban4
Mexico 799 April 22–27, 2017 18+ Face-to-face National
Nigeria 800 February 2–8, 2017 18+ Face-to-face National
Pakistan 1000 December 26, 2016 – January 13, 2017 18+ Face-to-face National
Peru 1000 April 13–26, 2017 18-70 Face-to-face National
Russia 1018 February 3-22, 2017 18+ Telephone National
Spain 797 February 8-15, 2017 18+ Telephone National
Turkey 966 March 2–20, 2017 15+ Face-to-face Urban5
United Kingdom 1001 January 27 – February 19, 2017 18+ Telephone National
USA 1000 January 19 February 1, 2017 18+ Telephone National
  1. In Brazil the survey was conducted in Belo Horizonte, Brasília, Curitiba, Goiânia, Porto Alegre, Recife, Rio de Janeiro, Salvador, São Paulo, representing 23 per cent of the national adult population.
  2. In China the survey was conducted in Beijing, Chengdu, Chongqing, Dalian, Guangzhou, Hangzhou,  Harbin, Shanghai, Shenyang, Shijiazhuang, Tianjin, Wuhan, Xi'an, and Zhengzhou, representing 15 per cent of the national adult population.
  3. In Indonesia the survey was conducted in Bandung, Jakarta, Makassar, Medan, and Surabaya, representing 8 per cent of the national adult population.
  4. In Kenya the survey was conducted in Bomet, Bungoma, Elgeyo-Marakwet, Embu, Homa Bay,   Kajiago, Kakamega, Kericho, Kiambu, Kilifi, Kirinyaga, Kisii, Kisumu, Kwale, Machakos, Makueni,  Meru, Migori, Mombasa, Nairobi, Nakuru, Nyandarua, Siaya, Tharaka, Turkana, Uasin, Gishu, and Vihiga, representing 32 per cent of the national adult population.
  5. In Turkey the survey was conducted in İstanbul, Tekirdağ, Bursa, İzmir, Adana, Samsun, Trabzon, Ankara, Kayseri, Malatya, Diyarbakır, and Erzurum, representing 47 per cent of the national adult population.

Research Partners


CountryResearch InstituteLocationContact
Australia GlobeScan Toronto Robin Miller
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+1 647 528 2767
Brazil Market Analysis Florianopolis Fabián Echegaray 
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+55 48 3364 0000 
Canada GlobeScan Toronto Robin Miller
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+1 647 528 2767
China GlobeScan Toronto Robin Miller
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+1 647 528 2767
France Efficience 3 Paris and Rheims Thierry Laurain
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+33 1 4316 5442
Germany Ri*QUESTA GmbH Teningen Bernhard Rieder
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+49 7641 93 43 36
Greece MRB Hellas Athens Vivian Antonopoulou 
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+30210 6971000 /+306944 414756 

India Team C Voter Noida Yashwant Deshmukh
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+91 120 424 7135
Indonesia DEKA Marketing Research Jakarta Ratna Mulia Darmawan
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+62 21 723 6901
Kenya Research Path Associates Ltd. Nairobi Charles Onsongo
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+254 20 2734770
Mexico Parametría Mexico City Francisco Abundis
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+52 55 2614 0089
Nigeria Market Trends Lagos Jo Ebhomenye
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+234 1734 7384
Pakistan Gallup Pakistan Islamabad Ijaz Shafi Gilani
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+92 51 2655630
Peru Datum Lima Urpi Torrado
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+511 215 0600
Russia CESSI Institute for Comparative Social Research Moscow Vladimir Andreenkov
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+7 495 650 55 18
Spain Sigma Dos Int. Madrid Petrana Valentinova
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+34 91 360 0474
Turkey Yöntem Research Consultancy Ltd. Istanbul Mehmet Aktulga
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+90 212 278 12 19
United Kingdom Populus Data Solutions London Patrick Diamond
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+44 207 553 4148
USA GlobeScan Toronto Robin Miller
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+1 647 528 2767
 

Questionnaire

I would now like to ask your impressions of some specific countries.

M1A. Please tell me if you think each of the following countries is having a mainly positive or mainly negative influence in the world. ROTATE

at) China
01 - Mainly positive
02 - Mainly negative
VOLUNTEERED (DO NOT READ)
03 - Depends
04 - Neither, neutral
99 - DK/NA
 
bt) France
ct) The United States
dt) The European Union
et) Japan
ft) Israel
gt) North Korea
ht) Canada

 

M1B. Please tell me if you think each of the following countries is having a mainly positive or mainly negative influence in the world. ROTATE

at) The United Kingdom
01 - Mainly positive
02 - Mainly negative
VOLUNTEERED (DO NOT READ)
03 - Depends
04 - Neither, neutral
99 - DK/NA
 
bt) Russia
ct) India
dt) Iran
et) Brazil
ft) Pakistan
gt) Germany
ht) South Africa
it) South Korea

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