Russian President Vladimir Putin became the most influential man of the year for the third time, followed by German Chancellor Angel Merkel and US President Barack Obama.
“Putin continues to prove he’s one of the few men in the world powerful enough to do what he wants and get away with it,” the magazine wrote.
According to the journalist, the sanctions imposed against Russia after the secession of Crimea weakened the ruble and drove Russia into a deep recession. However, the negative trend has not affected Putin’s popularity whose approval ratings stood at 89% in June 2015. Moreover, in early October, Russia launched a military operation in Syria that weakened NATO and US positions in the region and strengthened Russia’s influence abroad.German Chancellor Angela Merkel ranked second and became “the most powerful woman” in the world. According to Forbes, her determination to resolve the problem with Syrian refugees and the Greek credit crisis helped her ‘climb’ to the top of the list.
Third in the ranking is US President Barack Obama. As he enters the last year of his presidency, his ratings are gradually falling, both domestically and internationally, Forbes wrote.
“There’s no doubt that the United States remains the world’s greatest economic, cultural, diplomatic, technological and military power. But as Obama enters the final year of his presidency, it’s clear his influence is shrinking, and it’s a bigger struggle than ever to get things done,” the magazine wrote.