Catalonia, number 1 in foreign investment and job creation

The Catalan economy is more open than ever and attracts record levels of foreign investment, according to new data published on Thursday by the Catalan Minister for Business and Jobs, Felip Puig. The minister celebrated the fact that for the second year in a row, the prestigious ‘Financial Times’ newspaper ranked Catalonia first region in continental Europe in foreign investment and job creation. Catalonia attracted up to 91 new business projects with an estimated investment of almost 3,000 million dollars (around 2,257 million euros) and the creation of 7,427 jobs. Gross foreign investment figures from the Spanish government put the figure at 3,500 million euros. Exports in 2013 were at record levels, and generated 58,359 million euros. There are now more than 49,000 companies selling abroad in Catalonia, a 6.8% increase in comparison to 2012.

Dock cranes at the container terminal in Barcelona's Port (by J.R. Torné)
Dock cranes at the container terminal in Barcelona's Port (by J.R. Torné) / ACN


March 27, 2014 10:46 PM

Barcelona (ACN).- The internationalisation of the Catalan economy and its attraction of foreign investments are rocketing. This is according to new figures published on Thursday by the Catalan Minister for Business and Jobs, Felip Puig, who celebrated the fact that Catalonia continues to lead the FDI-Markets ‘Financial Times’ ranking on foreign investment attraction in continental Europe. Catalonia attracted up to 91 new business projects in 2013, which accounted for an investment of 2,997.30 million dollars and created 7,427 jobs. Last year Catalonia also achieved record level exports, totalling 58,359 million euros. According to the government figures, the number of companies selling abroad has increased by 6,8%, reaching the record number of 49,050.

The Catalan minister, Felip Puig, explained that two thirds of the export revenue is generated by only 25 big companies. This, according to Puig, highlights the need to boost export opportunities for medium and small enterprises. The Government has created a new support programme for Technology and Information companies and those in the third sector to help them open up business abroad.

Puig said that the political process in Catalonia, where the Government is planning to hold a referendum on independence in November, has not affected foreign investment. On the contrary, the minister said that these record figures highlight how the political process does not affect the economy.

The Catalan minister said that companies that invest in Catalonia appreciate that it is a well-connected and competitive area. Puig added that the plans to build the Mediterranean corridor as a strategic rail link within the European Union are going to make Catalonia even more attractive to foreign investors.

This positive data is also confirmed by the Spanish government. According to the Ministry of the Economy of Spain Catalonia received up to 3,500 million euros in gross foreign investment in 2013, the best results since the beginning of the crisis.

Invest in Catalonia

At the event today, the Catalan minister also praised the activity of Invest in Catalonia, the government organization set up to promote new investments in the country. In 2013, Invest in Catalonia got 52 projects that amounted to a total investment of 222 million and created 1,474 jobs. From those projects, 12 were related to the IT sector, 9 to the motor sector, 6 to the chemical industry and 6 from pharmaceutical sector. These are the best figures in the last four years for Invest in Catalonia on number of projects and jobs, although they have previously achieved higher volumes of investment. The projections for 2014 indicate that the positive trend will continue, as this organization has already closed negotiations for 12 new projects.