Ghanaians expressed the most optimism among 17 countries that an Obama regime would turn the world around into better prospects. 87% of people polled in Ghana predicted “better things under Obama” according to BBC World Service survey conducted recently ahead of Obama’s swearing-in on Tuesday.
The survey said there is growing optimism Barack Obama’s presidency will lead to improved relations between the US and the rest of the world. Fifteen of the 17 countries included in the survey reported a majority that believed the incoming administration would be good for international cooperation.
Overall, some 67% of the 17,000 respondents were optimistic of better relations, with just under one in five believing things would stay the same and 5% predicting a deterioration, the report added. People interviewed came from countries across South America, Africa, Europe and Asia between late November and early January.
The number of people stating that international relations with the US will improve rose sharply from a similar poll conducted six months ago. In that survey just 47% said they were optimistic that an Obama presidency would lead to better relations with the rest of the would.
The deepening economic crises came top when they were asked what global issues Obama will need to prioritize, according to the poll. Almost three-quarters of people said it should be a top priority. And half of the respondents said withdrawing troops from Iraq should be near the top of Obama’s ‘to do’ list.
Other priorities cited included addressing climate change and brokering peace between Israel and Palestinians. Majority Muslim countries are among those nations that saw the largest spike in optimism over the forthcoming Obama presidency, according to the poll.
In Turkey, the proportion of respondents who stated that international relations with the US would improve jumped from 11% six months ago to 51%. In Egypt it increased from 29% to 58% and in Indonesia it went up by 18 percentage points to 64%.