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Manchester secures two top 10 slots on global foreign direct investment rankings

13th December 2018

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Greater Manchester has been recognised as a leading global business destination, ranking 6th globally for foreign direct investment (FDI) strategy and 7th globally for connectivity.

The biennial results were published on Monday (10th December) in the Financial Times’ fDi Global Cities of the Future 2018/19 report, which assessed international cities on economic potential, business friendliness, human capital and lifestyle, cost effectiveness, and connectivity to identify the world’s key business destinations.

Manchester retained its 2016/17 position for FDI strategy, ranking above Dusseldorf, Montreal and Miami, and improved in the connectivity ranking, placing higher than Dubai, Barcelona, and Berlin.

To secure its ranking for connectivity, Greater Manchester was assessed against its digital infrastructure, telecoms and international travel connectivity, and quality of overall infrastructure; whereas for FDI strategy, the city region submitted a qualitative report that detailed its approach, which was then scored by an expert judging panel.

In the last year, the city region has attracted numerous new businesses including Amazon, GCHQ, and Jaguar Land Rover. Greater Manchester has also launched the Manchester India Partnership, secured a direct air route to India, and has celebrated two years of the direct Beijing air route, which has already increased export sales from Manchester to China by 41%, up to £1.29bn.

Tim Newns, CEO of MIDAS – Manchester’s inward investment agency, said: “These results further cement Greater Manchester’s reputation as a world leading business destination. Being innovative in our approach is critical to establishing and sustaining strong regional, national, and global relationships, and I’m delighted that Greater Manchester has been recognised on a global stage for its strengths in FDI strategy and connectivity; as well as for developing strong partnerships with key markets such as China and India.”

Andy Burnham, Mayor of Greater Manchester, said: “We see our future as a global city-region, working collaboratively with cities and partners across the world. These results showcase how we are continuing to strengthen our global profile and reputation in Greater Manchester and this will be even more significant when you consider the impact Brexit will have in the coming years.

“I am especially pleased to see us recognised for our engagement with China and India, two of the key markets we will need to work with in the coming years. We have recently seen the launch of the first direct flights between Manchester and Mumbai and I recently took part in a trade mission to China, showing our commitment to work with these two expanding economies.”

Sir Richard Leese, Leader of Manchester City Council, said: "It's great to see that Manchester's ability to compete for jobs and investment on a global stage are undiminished. This is a tremendous vote of confidence. From our international gateway at Manchester Airport to strengths in key growth sectors and cutting-edge technologies and a cultural, sporting and creative scene which makes it a place where people want to be, these are the reflection of a co-ordinated long-term strategy."   

The six categories summarised in the report are: FDI strategy; economic potential; business friendliness; human capital and lifestyle; cost effectiveness, and connectivity.

Click here to view the report in full

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