Foreign investment joy for Sheffield City Region

Jo Miller
Jo Miller
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Sheffield and the surrounding city region has got the thumbs up for the way it attracts direct investment from abroad.

But, the region is failing to compete with other European cities and regions when it comes to business friendliness, economic potential, cost effectiveness, infrastructure and human capital and lifestyle.

Sheffield City Region’s Local Enterprise Partnership is better than any other UK LEP when it comes to its strategy for attracting foreign direct investment, according to fDi Intelligence, a division of the Financial Times specialising in foreign direct investment and investment promotion.

When it came to the league table of mid-sized European Regions, the Sheffield City Region was ranked eighth overall and sixth for its foreign direct investment strategy.

Sheffield City Region director of inward investment, Ellen Cutler, said: “I am delighted that the City Region has been recognised for its attractiveness to foreign investors. This reinforces to an international audience what great assets we have and our appetite to seek out new opportunities in the global market place.”

While the City Region did well on the basis of its foreign direct investment strategy, it failed to secure a ranking for business friendliness, economic potential, cost effectiveness, infrastructure and human capital and lifestyle.

The Region’s performance contrasted with table toppers Greater Stockholm and Amsterdam, which featured in five of the six categories, only failing to secure a ranking in the table of cost effectiveness, which was the exclusive province of cities from the former Communist bloc.

Sheffield itself was ranked fourth among medium sized European cities for its foreign direct investment strategy – ahead of places like Portugal’s second largest city, Porto; Bilbao in Spain and Antwerp in Belgium, but behind Edinburgh, Liverpool, and Lyon, in France.

Another South Yorkshire centre - Doncaster – secured its sole place in fDi Intelligence’s latest rankings of the ‘European Cities and Regions of the Future,’ coming 10th in the same table.

Doncaster Council chief executive, Jo Miller, said: “I am very pleased Doncaster has been recognised as one of the best places to invest in the UK and Europe.’’

UK regions dominated the fDi Intelligence’s league table of the top European regions, taking 13 out of the 25 places, with the Sheffield City Region coming ninth. Sheffield failed to make the Top 10 Cities in the UK and Ireland rankings, but was placed ninth, ahead of Cambridge in the rankings of the Top 10 Northern European Cities on the basis of their foreign direct investment strategies.