Top 5 Global Cities To Live And Do Business In 2016

Article provided by Bayut.com

When it comes to living in a foreign city, one has to consider the population, infrastructure, overall size, political context, per capita income and development path. The city's economic growth, real estate developments and entertainment facilities also play a vital role in making decisions towards moving to a city or investing in it. Here we compile a list of five cities to look out for while aiming at living or investing internationally in 2016.

Each of the cities listed below features trophy developments along with impressive mixed-use communities and have good room for growth, which is achievable through improvements in transparency, livability and business environment. Some of the cities could also do well by attracting new capital for further developments, so without further ado, let’s see which city would be the best for you.

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5 Shanghai, China

Being the world’s sixth most globalized city, Shanghai could become your best bet for investment in East Asia. Having surpassed Tokyo, the city has successfully established itself as a global financial centre in recent years. Jobs are aplenty here since Shanghai is China’s business and financial hub and real estate investments here also deliver good profits in both the short and long terms.

Between 2015 and 2030, disposable incomes in Shanghai are expected to rise by over US $350 billion – more than London’s and Tokyo’s – and consumer spending may increase by more than US $250 billion. Rental yields here can go up to 6% in different categories, but gross rental yields in the city center currently stand at 2.21% and 2.60% outside  the city center.

The best possible place for investment could be the Qiantan Zone located next to the city’s existing Lujiazui CBD, as the government is planning to strengthen the city through developments. If you are planning to move with your family, the city is already developing a Disneyland park – slated for completion in 2016 – and Dreamworks’ Dreamcare center to uplift its tourist attractions. Also the healthcare facilities and education institutes here are at par with those in New York and the UK.

4 Dubai, UAE 

Dubai, the Middle East’s most modern city, has a population of around 2.1 million and a total area of 4,114 km². Dubai’s GDP per capita is $24,866. According to UAE property web portal Bayut.com, the real estate market is currently in the best position for long-term investment and the emirate features rental yields as high as 8% in some localities. At 0.72% a year, Dubai has one of the lowest property taxes in the world. What’s more? There is no income tax in Dubai, so you get to keep all that you earn.

Dubai’s residential developments, rapidly improving infrastructure and law and order are among the best in the world. The city also features one of the best healthcare and educational institutions in the world. The government invests heavily in healthcare and education and utilises the most innovative methods to better the living and governing standards in the emirate. Also the city has super cars as police vehicles and ambulances, what more can one ask for?

3 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

The Malaysian capital is among the world’s 25 most globalised cities and secures its importance as an important gateway to the country and the South-East Asia region. The city was reported to be the 6th largest destination for foreign direct investment last year which clearly demonstrates its strong international demand. The healthcare facilities here are perhaps the best in the entire region and many people from the South Asian countries come here in pursuit of quality education.

The city has one of the best planned and developed residential environments. The government keeps the city well supplied with quality infrastructure whenever needed and the iconic landmarks here continue to attract hordes of tourists. KL 118 tower, Kuala Lumpur’s new landmark, is slated for completion in 2020, but once developed it will reach a staggering height of 635 metres and become an iconic structure attracting more tourists and businessmen to the region.

Per numbeo.com the price to income ratio in Kuala Lumpur is 9.82. The gross rental yields in city centre are reportedly 4.79%, whereas gross rental yields outside city centre stand at 4.73%.

For business, the city is developing the Tun Razak Exchange project, which aims at establishing Kuala Lumpur as one of the world’s leading financial centres. Jobs are plentiful here if you are a skilled worker and the strategic location of the city also makes it a good trading point for global businesses.

2 Johannesburg, South Africa

While Cape Town is Africa’s most popular tourist destination, Johannesburg is South Africa’s largest city with the best rental yields in the entire country. The gross rental yields for Johannesburg apartments range from 6.5% to 9.3% per Global Property Guide, but other sources report 10.85% gross rental yields in the city center and 11.33% outside it. The residential market of the area is pro-landlord so buying is the best option if you are planning moving to the city. The residential apartments are currently best positioned for investment and one can buy an apartment and put it on rent to reap 11% annual rental yields.

Johannesburg metro has a population of 5,065,100 and is ranked 173rd in the world. The city had a GDP per capita of $16,370 in 2014. Education and healthcare facilities here are also quite worthwhile, although the city has a mediocre employment rate.

The city is mostly viewed as the financial hub of Africa and a large number of local and international businesses and corporations have their headquarters here. The Johannesburg Stock Exchange is the largest in Africa and the South African mining industry is also centered here. People across the region move to Johannesburg for professional opportunities so you already have a competitive workforce waiting for you if you wish to start a business here.

1 Mumbai, India

Mumbai is the financial capital of India and secures a distinct position at the forefront of Asia’s economic landscape. The city is also important for the political and administrative machinery of India and is one of the most densely populated cities in the country. Per stats, Mumbai’s population increased from 9.9 million in 1991 to 12.4 million in 2011.

In order to cater to the rapidly growing population, the government has developed significant infrastructure projects such as the Mumbai Metro, Mumbai Monorail and the controlled-access Eastern Freeway.

Mumbai's GDP was $278 billion in October 2015 (from 2014) and its per-capita (PPP) income was reported at $7,300 in 2009. Although salaries are comparatively high here, domestic help is very cheap. One can have a chauffeur, maids and personal security guards at nominal monthly costs.

The real estate developments in the city offer gated communities and secure neighbourhoods. Renting is advised in Mumbai as the gross rental yield here is just 1.84% in the city center and 2.55% outside. If you are planning moving here with family, the city offers you world class schools such as Ecole Francaise, the American School and German School. Healthcare facilities here are also at par with the global standards and medical treatment is quite economical. People from countries like the USA travel to Mumbai for quality yet affordable dental treatments. The city is also good for shopping and features top brands and jewelry available at economical prices.

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