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December 31, 2008
Toronto continues to rank as one of the most liveable and competitive cities in the world
Toronto continues to be considered one of the most liveable and competitive cities in the world as demonstrated by various international rankings and reports. In addition to securing its position on the world stage, Toronto’s high rankings also confirm that it continues to offer a high quality of life for the approximately 2.6 million residents who choose to live and work here.

“Toronto has maintained its place among the world's greatest cities because it provides residents with a quality of life that is envied around the globe," said Mayor David Miller. "In spite of the serious economic challenges we all face today, the Government of Toronto is committed to making this city a model of prosperity and liveability where everyone has the opportunity to succeed.

"With this in mind," Mayor Miller continued, "we will exercise restraint and careful judgement to protect the valuable services residents and businesses both expect and deserve. We will also target our capital investments to create jobs and keep people working while we make every effort to build meaningful partnerships with other orders of government so we can build a strong 21st century economy."

KPMG’s 2008 Competitive Alternatives study found that Toronto continues to offer one of the most cost-effective business and investment climates in the world. Toronto ranked fifteenth, ahead of U.S. cities such as Chicago, Detroit, New York, Philadelphia and Phoenix. The KPMG study measured 27 business cost components, including labour costs, facility costs, transportation costs, utility costs and income taxes in 10 countries and more than 100 cities around the world. The study also compared data on a variety of non-cost competitiveness factors that could also influence the attractiveness of locations to business, such as labour availability and skills, economic conditions and markets, innovation, infrastructure, the regulatory environment, cost of living and quality of life. The basis for comparison is the after-tax cost of startup and operations, over a 10-year period.

According to the Economist Intelligence Unit (the Economist Magazine), Toronto continues to rank fifth in the world for liveability; after Vancouver, Melbourne, Vienna and Perth. The December 2007 study rated 140 cities worldwide across the following five categories: stability, health care, culture and environment, education, and infrastructure. The Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) also ranked Toronto the second best destination for business travel; Vancouver beat Toronto by just 0.6 per cent. The EIU’s Business Travel index compares cities as potential venues for business trips, conferences and training locations. Cost considerations and environmental factors, such as stability, infrastructure, culture and health care, are taken into account.

For the third year in a row, Toronto’s quality of living was ranked fifteenth in the world by Mercer Human Resources Consulting. Canadian cities dominated the rankings in the Americas (North, Central and South America) with Toronto once again placing second after Vancouver. Canadian cities also scored best for personal safety, with Toronto tying Calgary, Montreal, Ottawa and Vancouver for the number 22 spot in the world. In the U.S., Chicago, Honolulu, Houston, Lexington, San Francisco and Winston-Salem all share rank 53. Mercer’s 2008 Quality of Living Survey evaluated 215 cities and selected 50 cities based on 39 quality of living criteria, including political, social, economic and environmental factors, safety, public services and transportation, and recreation.

A survey conducted by Z/Yen Group Limited for the City of London ranked Toronto twelfth on the Global Financial Centres Index (GFCI), just behind Frankfurt, Sydney and Boston, and ahead of Dublin and Jersey. Toronto has gained a position since the September 2007 report. The September 2008 GFCI report evaluated the competitiveness of 59 financial centres worldwide using results of online surveys completed by financial services leaders, and 57 separate indices of competitiveness. Toronto’s regulatory and tax environment, as well as its people factors, infrastructure and quality of life, contributed to the city’s rating.

In its November/December 2008 issue, Foreign Policy (FP) Magazine ranked Toronto as one of the world’s top 10 global cities, after New York, London, Paris, Tokyo, Hong Kong, Los Angeles, Singapore, Chicago and Seoul. FP’s inaugural 2008 Global Cities Index ranked 60 cities according to the following categories: business activity, human capital, information exchange, cultural experience and political engagement. Toronto ranked fourth for culture (after London, Paris and New York), tenth for human capital, eighteenth for information exchange, twenty-fourth for political engagement, and twenty-sixth for business activity.

Toronto also made Forbes Magazine’s 2008 list of the top 10 most economically powerful cities, beating out Madrid, Mexico City and Philadelphia for the number 10 spot. According to Forbes, Toronto continues to be the economic heart of one of the world’s wealthiest countries, and along with London, is the fastest growing G7 financial centre.

The 2008 Worldwide Centers of Commerce Index ranked Toronto thirteenth in the world (after London, New York, Tokyo, Singapore, Chicago, Hong Kong, Paris, Frankfurt, Seoul, Amsterdam, Madrid and Sydney), and third in North America (after New York and Chicago). Developed for MasterCard, the index evaluates 75 of the world’s leading global cities and their role in driving the international economy based on seven categories: legal and political framework, economic stability, ease of doing business, financial flow, business centre, knowledge creation and information flow, and liveability. Toronto ranked sixth, alongside Montreal and Vancouver, for its legal and political framework, and fourth for ease of doing business, after Singapore, Hong Kong and London.

According to the Appleton Foundation’s national Canadian cities ranking report on sustainable urban transportation - the GreenApple Canada 2008 SMART Transportation Ranking Report - Toronto ranked fifth, after Victoria, Vancouver, Ottawa-Gatineau and Montreal. Toronto moves up a spot from the 2007 report.

The World Intellectual Property Organization, which tracks the number and types of patents that have been issued worldwide, reported that Toronto had the eighteenth-highest number of patents globally. Patents are one of the most direct ways of measuring innovation.

Toronto is Canada’s largest city and sixth largest government, and home to a diverse population of about 2.6 million people. It is the economic engine of Canada and one of the greenest and most creative cities in North America. In the past three years, Toronto has won numerous awards for quality, innovation and efficiency in delivering public services. Toronto’s government is dedicated to prosperity, opportunity and liveability for all its residents.

Media contacts:
Don Wanagas, Office of the Mayor, 416-338-7134,
Rob Andrusevich, Strategic Communications, 416-397-4149,



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