Positive Views of Canada’s Influence on the Rise


6 March 2011 – After a decline in last year’s poll, favourable views of Canada are again on the rise, according to a poll of 27 countries around the world conducted for BBC World Service. On average, among the 27 tracking countries, 57 per cent gave Canada a favourable evaluation, and 12 per cent an unfavourable evaluation. The overall positive rating is up five points from 2010, while the negative rating has remained mostly stable. Of the 27 countries surveyed this year, all lean positive except Pakistan, where opinion is divided.
Some of the biggest positive shifts have been in countries with which Canada has a close relationship. Positive views are up 16 points in the United Kingdom (78%), 15 points in the United States (82%), and 13 points in Mexico (50%). Negative views also decreased by seven points in Mexico (14%).
Other publics that have become more favourable towards Canada are found in Italy (74%, up nine points), Indonesia (45%, up eight points), the Philippines (83%, up eight points), Australia (79%, up eight points), Russia (51%, up seven points), and South Korea (up seven points).
Shifts in views of Canada’s influence have occurred in three majority-Muslim countries. The most dramatic change is Turkey, which went from leaning negative to leaning positive, with favourable views up 19 points (35%) and negative views down nine points (26%). Egypt, divided in 2010, now leans positive as well, favourable views having risen by 14 points (32%). In Pakistan, evaluations have shifted from leaning negative to being divided as favourable views have increased by six points (17%). However, a strong majority in Pakistan still states no strong opinion about Canada.
In two countries, negative ratings have decreased significantly. Among Nigerians, negative evaluations are down 18 points to 8 per cent, while positive evaluations are up 12 points to 55 per cent. Views in India have grown less negative by seven points (13%), while positive ratings are up five points (29%). Indian opinion is now leaning positive after being divided in 2010.
Two countries were exceptions to the general trend, as their positive views of Canada weakened. In Kenya, favourable attitudes are down 16 points (39%) and unfavourable attitudes are up seven points (24%). Positive perceptions in Brazil have dropped 12 points (48%, down from 60%). In China, negative views have risen by 17 points (29%), but there is still a strong majority of 56 per cent of Chinese who say Canada has a positive influence in the world.

Media Contacts

For media interviews with the participating pollsters, please contact:

Sam Mountford, Research Director
GlobeScan Incorporated, London
+44 20 7928 5368
(Mobile: +44 7854 132625)
Oliver Martin, Director, Global Development
GlobeScan Incorporated, Toronto
+1 416 969 3073
(Mobile: +1 416 721 3544)

About the Country Influence Poll

GlobeScan has been tracking general public opinions about country’s influence in the world for the BBC World Service since 2005. The latest results are based on 28,619 in-home or telephone interviews conducted across a total of 27 countries. GlobeScan coordinated fieldwork between December 2, 2010 and February 4, 2011. In eight of the 27 countries, the sample was limited to major urban areas. The margin of error per country ranges from +/- 2.8 to 4.9 per cent, 19 times out of 20. The Canadian data was based on telephone interviews with a nationally representative sample of 1000 adult Canadians.

About GlobeScan

GlobeScan Incorporated is an international opinion research consultancy. We provide global organisations with evidence-based insight to help them set strategy and shape their communications. Companies, multilateral institutions, governments, and NGOs trust GlobeScan for our unique expertise across reputation management, sustainability, and stakeholder relations. GlobeScan conducts research in over 90 countries, is ISO 9001-2008 quality certified and 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. For more information, visit: www.globescan.com

About BBC World Service

The 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 180 million globally (2010), 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: www.bbc.co.uk/worldservice