Vietnam 50th in global soft power ranking

By Nguyen Quy   March 3, 2020 | 02:04 am PT
Vietnam 50th in global soft power ranking
Women hold flags of Vietnam and U.S. as they welcome President Donald Trump to Hanoi for his summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, February 26, 2019. Photo by VnExpress/Phong Vinh.
A Soft Power Index places Vietnam 50th among world’s 60 most influential countries, lagging far behind some of its Southeast Asian peers.

The country scored an overall 31.3 points out of 100 in the first-ever Global Soft Power Index compiled by London-based consultancy Brand Finance.

The consultancy interviewed 1,000 experts including politicians and business leaders, as well as 54,000 members of the public to rank 60 countries on their ‘soft power,’ the ability to influence others through the art of diplomacy and persuasion.

Three metrics - familiarity, reputation, and influence, as well as seven soft power pillars - business and trade, governance, international relations, culture and heritage, media and communications, education and science, and people and values were used.

The index reveals that Vietnam's soft power is weaker than several Southeast Asian peers. Singapore is ranked 20th, Thailand 32nd, Malaysia 33rd, Indonesia 41st, the Philippines 42nd, and Myanmar 60th.

In Asia, Vietnam was the 10th most influential country.

Vietnam scored 5.5 out of 10 for familiarity, which assesses the level of awareness about a country, and 5.6 in global reputation.

The country scored 3.1 in terms of its influence on the world stage, 3.3 in people and values, and 3.4 in culture and heritage.

Vietnam did not fare well in categories such as business and trade, international relations, media and communication, and did worse in education and science.

The Vietnamese capital, Hanoi, drew global attention in February last year when it hosted the second summit between North Korean Chairman Kim Jong-un and U.S. President Donald Trump.

Analysts said the event significantly furthered Hanoi's diplomacy agenda, showing Vietnam as a neutral and trustworthy partner. The meeting did not yield deal, with both sides disagreeing on the process of denuclearization and lifting of sanctions over North Korea.

The U.S. tops the index as the most influential country in the world, followed by Germany and the U.K.

China stands fifth in the index, right after Japan.

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