Switzerland is again considered top of a global country poll about key factors for trade, travel and investment.
The Swiss remained in the number one spot for the third consecutive year, ahead of Japan, Canada, Germany and Britain, according to a survey by a United States media company published on Wednesday.
Eight European countries feature in the top ten, with Australia and the US in seventh and eighth position respectively.
“Switzerland is seen as excelling in many areas in the Best Countries reportexternal link, such as business-oriented metrics, providing a high quality of life and being a leader in innovation,” a statement says.
“Respondents in the survey consider Switzerland the top country in terms of economic stability, access to capital, a strong legal framework and prestige. With a history of neutrality stretching centuries, the country has four official languages, reflecting its geographic crossroads,” it adds.
“[Switzerland] has had to, over the centuries, develop a way that cultures can work together," says Dan Hamilton of the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies, quoted in the press release.
Level of trust
The authors of the report also point out that the world's level of trust in the US has declined for the third consecutive year.
The study, the fourth of its kind, was published by the U.S News & World Report web-based media company and assesses 80 countries for factors including quality of life and economic potential.
The authors of the report say they identified a set of 65 country attributes that were presented to more than 20,000 people – including informed elite and business decision makers - across the globe.
The countries surveyed represent about 95% of global gross domestic product and more than 80% of the world’s population, according to the authors.