Toronto has moved into second place overall in a study of the most promising investment locations in the Americas by fDi Intelligence – a specialist publication from the Financial Times. This ranking reflects Toronto’s rising stature as an international centre of investment, commerce, trade, development and innovation.
Despite the ongoing COVID-19 global pandemic, Toronto moved up from third to second place in the 2021/2022 Americas Cities of the Future overall ranking and in the Economic Potential and Business Friendliness categories. The software and IT services sector is the top recipient of foreign investment in Toronto and received only two fewer projects in 2020 than in 2019. Among others, Google announced in February 2020 that it will open a new 37,160 square metre office tower in the city.
Toronto also made it into the top 10 for the Human Capital and Lifestyle category and moved from seventh to sixth place in the Connectivity category.
International rankings of this kind confirm that Toronto is increasingly recognized for its smart – and mutually reinforcing – investments in business development, culture, people and neighbourhoods. Together, these resources and attributes make Toronto attractive to international investors, companies, visitors and talent.
Toronto is a global leader in technology, finance, film, music, culture and innovation. This remarkable multi-sector strength drives innovation and economic synergies that make Toronto a great place to succeed. It is this diversity that supports a strong Toronto economy, one that has demonstrated resiliency and stability through changing times.
With travel restricted due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Toronto and partners such as Toronto Global, pivoted from in-person interactions to online engagement and digital trade missions to maintain and increase Toronto’s visibility to foreign investment. Strategies included attending and organizing virtual events, meetings and site tours; providing more information digitally, and launching innovative programs such as the Toronto Clean Energy Partnership.
Despite the pandemic, there remains a sustained interest by major international companies in the Toronto Region. Recent investments include:
The Toronto Region is the largest technology hub in Canada and fifth largest in North America, with 24,000 companies employing 290,000 people. Toronto ranks second in North America (after only San Francisco) in the number of tech degrees – 24,083 between 2014-2018.
In 2018, the Amazon H2Q bid was led by Toronto Global, drawing together the region’s many municipalities, along with the Province and other partners, to create a compelling, concise snapshot of our many advantages into a Bid Book that we made open to all. It quickly became our calling card to the world, receiving more than 20,000 downloads and helping to attract more than 100 investments across Toronto Region worth more than $1 billion in capex and 5,000 jobs.
The City and Toronto Global, the Toronto Region’s Investment Attraction agency, are proud to work in partnership with other orders of governments and the private and community sectors to drive investment to the city and region of Toronto, and create new opportunities for Toronto’s industries, businesses, workers and residents.
The fDi Intelligence Americas Cities of the Future 2021/2022 overall results are available here
“As Toronto continues to safely reopen from the COVID-19 pandemic, I am committed to leading a strong economic recovery and attracting more investment and more jobs. This ranking confirms that Toronto is one of the best places for businesses to invest, build, expand and succeed. Toronto is the economic engine of Canada and I’m confident that our city will come back stronger than ever in the years ahead because of the work we are doing to build our city up and continue to attract people and businesses.”
– Mayor John Tory
“The City of Toronto and our partners, including Toronto Global, continue to promote Toronto as the best location for foreign direct investment, despite the COVID-19 pandemic. We have found new ways of working together and connecting with potential investors during these challenging times and that experience will serve us well as we move ahead to reopen, recover and rebuild.”
– Deputy Mayor Michael Thompson (Scarborough Centre), Chair of the Economic and Community Development Committee
“Despite a year mired by the global pandemic, the enduring confidence of investors in the Toronto Region has remained. Major international companies are choosing the Toronto Region and they are betting big on our future. We are proud to be named one of the top cities in North America for investment – a true testament to the region’s resilience, growth and potential.”
– Mark Cohon, Chair, Toronto Global Board of Directors.
“As the fastest growing urban metropolitan region and tech hub in North America, we are committed to continuing that pace of growth and investment. Not only to get back to where we were before the pandemic, but to go beyond what we have achieved already. As the Toronto Region continues to place among the best cities in the world for investment, we will play a leading role in the country’s recovery and are working to come back stronger than ever.”
– Stephen Lund, Chief Executive Officer, Toronto Global.
fDi Intelligence is a specialist publication from the Financial Times, producing multimedia content on global cross border investment and economic development. The bi-monthly print magazine is read by more than 15,000 senior-level executives at multinational corporations and professionals involved in greenfield site-selection decisions worldwide
Toronto is home to more than 2.9 million people whose diversity and experiences make this great city Canada’s leading economic engine and one of the world’s most diverse and livable cities. As the fourth largest city in North America, Toronto is a global leader in technology, finance, film, music, culture and innovation, and consistently places at the top of international rankings due to investments championed by its government, residents and businesses. For more information visit the City’s website or follow us on Twitter, Instagram or Facebook.
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