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Business › Tokyo moves into top 3 in GPCI 2016 city rankings

by October 18, 2016 General


The Mori Memorial Foundation’s Institute for Urban Strategies, a research institute established by Mori Building, unveiled Tuesday its Global Power City Index (GPCI) 2016 report. The report was first released in 2008; it evaluates and ranks
42 major cities according to their “magnetism,” or their perceived overall power to attract creative individuals and enterprises from around the world.

The report revealed that Tokyo achieved a top three ranking for the first time, having been ranked fourth for the previous eight consecutive years; positive evaluations in the categories of Cultural Interaction, Livability and Accessibility helped improve its scores.

London maintained its top ranking for the fifth year running despite its overall score decreasing slightly. New York experienced no significant change in its ratings, retaining its No. 2 slot, also for the fifth year running. Paris dropped out of the top three to fourth position, due largely to a perceived decrease in the levels of Cultural Interaction and Research & Development; the terrorist attacks of last November are likely to have influenced those ratings.

Key Highlights

 Tokyo overtook Paris and moved into third place. The increase was due to a number of factors, including a reduction in Japan’s rate of corporate taxation, an increase in the number of visitors to the city from abroad and an increase in the number of direct flight connections to overseas destinations. The weakening of the Japanese currency had a negative impact on Tokyo’s GDP
expressed in U.S. dollars, however it still remains the highest of all the 42 cities in the index. Scores in the category of Livability increased, boosted by reduced housing costs and lower general living costs (both in dollar terms).

 London saw its scores for GDP, GDP growth and general economic performance fall, and the city’s overall score decreased slightly. However, it retained its strong showing in the area of Cultural Interaction, where there was a rise in the number of visitors and students from abroad, and the UK capital therefore held on to its overall commanding lead. (Note: this research is
based on data collected prior to the Brexit vote in June 2016.)

 In North America, New York experienced no significant changes in its score, remaining in second place globally; it continued to achieve strong ratings in the categories of Economy, Research & Development and Cultural Interaction. Los Angeles rose from 14th place to 13th. The city kept its high score in the categories of Research and Development and Cultural Interactions. San Francisco, Chicago, Boston, and Washington D.C. were in 24th, 25th, 27th, and 29th place respectively.

 In Europe, Paris saw its score in Cultural Interaction fall due to a decrease in the number of visitors from abroad and a decline in the number of international students and foreign residents. Following the terrorist attacks of last November, there were widespread concerns about safety and visitor numbers fell, which seems to have been a major factor in Paris’s drop from third to fourth place. In the overall rankings, Berlin was bumped from 8th to 9th position by Amsterdam, while Vienna and Frankfurt retained their respective No. 10 and No. 11 slots.

 Within Asia Pacific, Singapore remained in fifth place globally despite a fall in its overall score; there were signs of a stalling economy, such as slowing GDP growth and a decline in total employment. Shanghai climbed from 17th to 12th in the overall rankings, improving its scores across all categories. Sydney fell two places to 14th. Seoul and Hong Kong retained their
respective sixth and seventh positions, while Beijing rose one spot to 17th. Kuala Lumpur, Taipei, and Bangkok were in 32nd, 33rd and 34th place respectively. 

“Tokyo’s positive result is due to the effects of various reforms enacted as part of the National Strategic Economic Zone policy, as well as the influence of various micro-economic factors, and Abenomics,” said Heizo Takenaka, Chairman of the Institute for Urban Strategies, The Mori Memorial Foundation. “More deregulation is necessary in order for Tokyo to retain its No. 3
position, and to help Tokyo aim for an even higher ranking in the build up to the 2020 Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games.”

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