Vietnamese cities seeing some of world’s most rapid economic growth: report

By Vi Vu   March 28, 2018 | 02:00 pm PT
Vietnamese cities seeing some of world’s most rapid economic growth: report
An elevated railway line runs across the dense Hanoi. Photo by VnExpress/Ba Do
Ho Chi Minh City and Hanoi enter the top 10 on a new ranking for urban economic momentum.

Ho Chi Minh City has been ranked third and and Hanoi sixth on a new survey that measures urban centers’ short-term growth and modernization pace around the world.

The cities are attracting sizable volumes of foreign direct investment as they integrate into regional and global supply chains for high-technology manufacturing, American investment management company JLL (Jones Lang LaSalle Inc.) said in its City Momentum Index 2018.

Such global attention, which is expected to continue in the near future, is helping to spur rapid economic and income growth, leading to among the world’s highest rates of increase in retail sales and air passenger numbers, it said.

Vietnam's actual foreign investment reached an all-time high of $17 billion last year, when its aviation industry also served a record number of more than 94 million passengers.

Stephen Wyatt, regional director of JLL Vietnam, said that seeing the Vietnamese cities in the top 10 "is not surprising."

"The pace of development within both cities is very evident and the government is making significant investment in infrastructure, which will help continue this momentum into the future," he said in a statement.

"There is an energy and buzz within the cities, with high levels of confidence and positive market sentiment," he said.

Last year, Ho Chi Minh City was ranked the world’s second most dynamic city, while Hanoi was placed eighth.

The 2018 edition of the index covers 131 major established and emerging markets, and focuses for the first time on two separate elements of city dynamism: short-term market momentum and 'future-proofing' for longer-term success. The short-term component suggests a three-year forecast and the long-term looks at cities with a 10-year vision.

While the United States leads the long-term list, with San Francisco, Silicon Valley and New York taking the top positions, Asia dominates the short-term development ranking, which identifies the urban economies which are currently undergoing the most rapid growth.

India has four of the top five markets as its cities register among the highest rates of demographic and economic growth, while also benefiting from government efforts to boost business attractiveness and invest in infrastructure. 

Chinese cities account for 11 of the top 30 in short-term development, which also includes Asian ‘megahubs’ Manila (18th), Jakarta (23rd), Kuala Lumpur (24th) and Bangkok (28th), the regional gateways with the scale to compete for talent, visitors and innovation.

The index found Singapore and Seattle in the “sweet spot” as they make the top 30 in both the long-term and short-term development lists.

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