A Washington D.C. think tank has ranked Santiago as the world’s 9th fastest growing city in 2011 in its Global MetroMonitor report – and placed the Chilean capital at number one in Latin America.
The report by the Brookings Institution considered factors such as GDP and job market expansion in 200 of the world’s largest, or most regionally influential, metropolitan economies.
Santiago was the only Latin American city in a top 10 that was dominated by Asian cities, and by China in particular, with Shanghai at 1st place, Hangzhou at 5th, Shenzhen in 8th and Shenyang at 10th. Alongside them were Saudi cities Riad and Yida (2nd and 3rd places respectively) and Izmir, Ankara and Istanbul in Turkey (4th, 6th and 7th places respectively).
The study highlighted the rise in employment and income in Santiago, with employment increasing 4.9 percent from 2010 to 2011, and per capita income rising 5.7 percent – double the increases seen in Buenos Aires (at 16th in the ranking) and Lima (at 25th).
“Santiago is rising in the ranking because its [economic] performance has been very good,” said co-author of the report and Brookings analyst, Emilia Istrate, to Diario Financiero. “Employment rose almost 5 percent, while in Lima, it only rose 2.5 percent.”
Santiago’s economic performance was driven by the entrepreneurial, finance and services sectors, said Istrate, as well as tourism, trade and the reconstruction programs that followed the 8.8 magnitude earthquake that hit Chile in 2010.