Site Selection magazine has released its annual rankings of Global Best to Invest locations, which will appear in the 67-year-old publication’s May 2021 issue. The newly refurbished rankings employ a robust index of business indicators including Site Selection’s own project data as well as data from UNCTAD, the World Economic Forum, Kearney, Startup Genome, the World Bank, OECD and Milken Institute to recognize the nations and metro areas with the most economic momentum and promise across several world regions.
“Is a global economy wrung out from a historic pandemic ready to be refreshed and rejuvenated?” asks Managing Editor Adam Bruns. “Site Selection’s refreshed rankings offer some guideposts for the way back. As the recalibration continues in these most interesting of times, look to these Global Best to Invest locations for emerging opportunities.”
The United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Australia and Germany led the way on a global basis, with Ireland coming in No. 2 on a per capita basis. Among regional winners at the country level were Israel, South Africa and the UAE in the Africa & Middle East Region; Mexico, Brazil and Chile in the Latin America & Caribbean Region; and Estonia, Hungary and Slovakia in the per capita category for Eastern Europe and Central Asia. High-performing metros include Shanghai, Singapore, Budapest, Sao Paulo and London.
In other rankings in the issue, North Carolina has won the Prosperity Cup, which is awarded to the most competitive state based on an index of 10 criteria, including project, capex and job creation data from Site Selection and data from the Tax Foundation, ACT and Beacon Hill Institute. The state, which tied with Georgia in Site Selection’s Business Climate Rankings in November 2020, jumped to No. 1 from No. 6 last year, largely on the coattails of the life sciences sector, and has just welcomed a $1 billion campus announcement from Apple to continue the momentum. Georgia was No. 2 in the Prosperity Cup rankings, followed by Texas, Ohio and then Indiana and Kentucky in a tie for fifth place. New to the top 10 this year are No. 7 South Carolina and No. 8 Arizona.
The Mac Conway Awards for Excellence in Economic Development, named in honor of Site Selection founding publisher H. McKinley “Mac” Conway, are awarded to the top 25 local and regional U.S. economic development groups based on an index of corporate job creation and facility-related capital investment data calculated both cumulatively and per capita.
“There may never have been a more challenging year than was 2020 for those who work in the vital field of economic development. As businesses reeled and supply chains shuddered, this singular group of professionals stepped forward to help steer communities through the pandemic, the battle against which remains unfinished,” said Site Selection Senior Editor Gary Daughters.
One theme resonant throughout the rankings is the omnipresence of Amazon, whether it’s a new tech hub, an Amazon Air expansion or a 1,000-job fulfillment center. Insights into what makes Amazon tick can be found in this issue too, in Site Selection’s exclusive interview with Amazon Head of Worldwide Economic Development Holly Sullivan.
Also featured in the May 2021 issue: Top Deals of the Year; the Entergy Intelligence Report; industry reports on health tech and the North American automotive sector; and spotlights on Asia, the United Kingdom, Quebec, Florida, Kentucky, Arizona, Iowa and Ohio, among other coverage.
Site Selection magazine, published by Conway Inc., delivers expansion planning information to 45,000 executives of fast-growing firms. The senior publication in the development field, Site Selection is also available via Site Selection Online.
Global Best to Invest Rankings
Prosperity Cup Rankings
Mac Conway Awards (in alphabetical order by organization name)
Austin Chamber of Commerce
Austin-Round Rock, TX
Bowling Green Area Chamber of Commerce
Bowling Green, KY
Charlotte Regional Business Alliance
Charlotte-Concord Gastonia, SC
Dallas Regional Chamber//Fort Worth Chamber of Commerce
Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington, TX
Detroit Regional Partnership
EDGE (Economic Development Growth Engine)/Greater Memphis Chamber
Greater Chattanooga Economic Partnership
Greater Des Moines Partnership
Des Moines-West Des Moines, IA
Greater Houston Partnership
Houston-The Woodlands-Sugar Land, TX
Greater Phoenix Economic Council
Huntsville/Madison County Chamber
Lansing Economic Area Partnership (LEAP)
Lansing-East Lansing, MI
Louisville Forward/Greater Louisville, Inc.
Louisville/Jefferson County, KY-IN
Montgomery Area Chamber of Commerce
REDI Cincinnati/Kentucky Triad
Savannah Economic Development Authority
World Business Chicago