LONDON, Jan. 17 (Xinhua) -- A study released by VisitBritain on Thursday suggested that image of the UK was greatly boosted by the hosting of the London 2012 Games.
According to result of the study, global perceptions of "welcome", Britain's "overall nation brand" and the sporting and cultural credentials of the UK have significantly improved thanks to the Games.
The Nations Brands Index (NBI) research rates 50 of world's leading nations around six core categories, was carried out in last July and repeated after the Olympics.
Britain has moved from the twelfth place as a welcoming nation to the ninth, edging into the top 10 for the first time.
Its overall national brand and culture ranking moved up one place, with tourism in the fourth position. Nine of the panel countries, including the United States, China, Japan, Russia and India, ranked the UK in the top three on the overall NBI.
The study also found that among those polled for the study, 63 percent said the Olympic had increased their interest of visiting the UK for a holiday, 75 percent agreed they wanted to see more than London, and 70 percent said Britain had lovely countryside.
Perceptions of British sport see it move up two places into the top five in the overall rankings. The UK will continue to host major sporting events in the coming years such as a Champions league Final, Tour de France, and the World Athletics Championships.
"London's hosting of the Games, the amazing opening and closing ceremonies and the warmth of welcome shown to our international visitors have combined to boost our global image," said Sandie Dawe, Chief Executive of VisitBritain.
"Britain is already an established visitor destination and our tourism ranking is high. The goal this year was to maintain rankings in culture and heritage where we are strong, and improve in areas such as the warmth of our welcome where we had room for improvement."
Culture Secretary Maria Miller noted that the summer of 2012 put the UK firmly in the global spotlight, shaping international perceptions and showing the best of Britain.
"We are determined to deliver a lasting economic legacy for the whole country, boosting tourism and growth," she said.