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London favoured destination for Indian businesses

business Updated: Dec 09, 2008 20:33 IST
Vijay Dutt

London has emerged as the most attractive city for businesses to locate. Indian executives, aiming to go global, also considered London as their first choice, said a report by PricewaterhouseCooopers.

The report “The World via London: Where Will Your Company Be in 2012?” asked over 200 senior executives outside the United Kingdom, in the process of expanding their business beyond home borders, to rank 21 cities in terms of the best location from which to set up international operations.

Using a range of criteria from skills through to quality of life, London came out as the overall winner. London has a 4 per
cent brand premium over New York, 20 per cent over Singapore, and 23 per cent over Shanghai and Paris.

When the figures where studied in detail, it appeared that Indian executives rated London in the top quartile in nine out of the 14 key location drivers, which included staff quality, access to professional services and life quality.

The rating of location requirements showed great variation across the EU, USA, Brazil, China, India, Japan and Russia, with all countries placing a different weighting on tax rates, reputation, and macro economic conditions. However, all respondents agreed London's reputation and highly skilled workforce was unrivalled. Executives from Brazil, Russia, India and China (BRIC) particularly highlighted London's access to markets.

London Mayor Boris Johnson said, “Despite the economic downturn, London remains the city of choice for Indian executives who recognise our city's unique attributes, expertise and benefits and confirms the strength of the relationship between London and India.”

Indian High Commissioner Shiv Shankar Mukherjee said that there are 10,000 businesses in London owned by non-resident Indians or Indian-origin people with a turnover of $15 billion, representing 5 per cent of London's economy.