Canada becomes No. 1 country brand globally

November 6th, 2010 - 11:15 am ICT by IANS  

By Gurmukh Singh
Toronto, Nov 6 (IANS) Canada has toppled the US to become the most respected country brand in the world, according to a report on global branding on the basis of tourism.

In the latest Country Brand Index released by FutureBrand, a New York-based global brand consultancy, Canada has become the most respected country brand in the world after bumping the US from the top spot as it leveraged the 2010 Winter Games in Vancouver to extend the global reach of its brand.

“After launching the revitalized tourism brand ‘Canada. Keep exploring’ six years ago, Canada leapfrogged from 12th place in 2006 to sixth place in 2007, and jumped again to second place in 2008, a position it held again in 2009,” a statement by the Canadian Tourism Commission (CTC) said Friday.

“This year, the US ceded the coveted premier spot to Canada. Amid this jostling, Canada’s tourism brand has emerged as powerful, engaging and vibrant in an intensely competitive international tourism marketplace.”

Michele McKenzie, president and CEO of the Canadian Tourism Commission, said, “Several years ago, CTC set out to refresh Canada’s tourism brand in anticipation of being on the world stage in 2010. We believed that - with the right strategy - a legacy of the Games could be more interest in Canada as a travel destination, and ultimately more visitors.”

She said she will accept the award at a formal ceremony in London next month at the annual World Travel Market (WTM) which is one of the world’s largest travel, trade and media showcases.

The Canadian government pumped in millions of dollars to promote the country globally during this year’s Vancouver
Winter Olympics, with the Canadian Tourism Commission getting as much as $26 million.

Tourism brings billions of dollars into the economy and creates hundreds of thousands jobs in Canada.

With a view to wooing Indian tourists, the CTC has roped in Bollywood actor Akhshay Kumar. The Toronto Tourism Board is also launching new campaigns in New Delhi and Mumbai to woo tourists.

(Gurmukh Singh can be contacted at gurmukh.s@ians.in)

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