Porto continues to win awards and score points at an international level. After having conquered the fifth place in the 2020/21 edition of the ranking "European Cities and Regions of the Future - The Best and the brightest among Europe investments destination", from "fDi Magazine", publication of the British newspaper "Financial Times" specialized in foreign investment, "Invicta" climbed this year to the podium. The city, which stretches from Foz do Douro to Campanhã, reached third position in the ranking of medium-sized European cities (cities with a population of around 200 thousand inhabitants), in the category of best strategy for attracting foreign direct investment (FDI strategy - Mid-sized Cities).
Ahead of Porto, the only city in Europe with six bridges connecting the banks of the Douro River and linking Porto to Vila Nova de Gaia, only Vilnius (Lithuania; 1st place) and Belfast (United Kingdom; 2nd place) were ranked. In this ranking, Porto is ahead of other prestigious cities such as Edinburgh, Newcastle and Nottingham, all located in the United Kingdom, or Bilbao, in Spain. The top 10 may be consulted here.
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Porto City Hall clarified that, to draw up this ranking, the panel of judges invited by "fDi Magazine" assessed the investment promotion strategies of 75 European cities and regions, grouped according to their population. The methodology implemented took into account indicators such as the type of investments attracted in the last 18 months, the fastest growing sectors and the initiatives taken to promote economic recovery in the post-pandemic period.
Thus, the result reflects "the priority that the Municipality of Porto gives to economic dynamisation and job creation through the attraction of foreign companies and investors to Porto". The municipal strategy is "led by InvestPorto, a municipal division specialized in the promotion and facilitation of direct investment", which, since its creation in 2015, has already contributed to "the attraction of more than 1700 million euros in investment and the creation of more than 18,000 new jobs" in the city.
But this recognition is not the only distinction that impresses when looking at Porto's recent statistics. According to multinational consultancy firm Ernst & Young, in 2020 the Porto region, which includes cities such as Matosinhos, Maia or Vila do Conde, recorded a growth in foreign direct investment of around 51%. According to Eurostat, when you invest in the Porto region, in real estate, for example, or in any other area, you are reaching all the Portuguese-speaking markets and those of the European Union, which represents, potentially, something like 743 million consumers.
In 2021, the city of Porto was considered by "Monocle" the best small city to live in the world. In this regard, it is worth remembering the quality/price ratio faced by families who want to buy a house. See apartments and houses here. In the same year, a prestigious Swiss management university - the International Institute for Management Development (IMD), based in Lausanne - placed the city in 8th place in the list of world communities with the best knowledge of foreign languages. And this helps to understand why InterNations, the largest expatriate community in the world, considered Porto as the third city, worldwide, where relocated people are happiest.
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But there is more, the aforementioned IMD considers that Porto is among the eleven cities with the best communications infrastructure in the world. And Disclosure Insight Actions (CDP), a non-profit institution that monitors the global disclosure system for investors, companies, cities, states and regions to measure their environmental impacts, in a ranking prepared in 2021, places Porto in the Top 95 of the world's leading cities for climate action.
The list of awards Porto has won is not endless but very long, making it impossible for any investor not to recognize its economic sex-appeal. It is also worth mentioning the "Money.co.uk" study, according to which Porto is in the Top 20 healthiest cities in the world to live in 2022, more precisely in 14th place.In this list, "Invicta" comes with the 23rd best score in health care, to which is added the virtue of being able to enjoy 2,468 hours of sun per year and of offering an average life expectancy of 80.7 years.
It remains to be added that this year there is another Portuguese city in the "fDi Magazine" ranking and which is only 40 minutes away from Porto. Braga, considered the city of bishops, but essentially a university city - the University of Minho has almost 20 thousand university students, which represents a significant contribution to a student community that, in the North of Portugal, is around 195 thousand -, which has progressively and sustainably affirmed itself as an impressive cradle of startups, is now considered the fifth European city of the future in the category dedicated to the strategy of attracting external investment, with regard to small cities.
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