London has been named ‘best business city in the world’ for the second time by Business Traveller Asia Pacific magazine, a publication that celebrates the travel and hospitality industry.
The annual travel awards identify achievers in hospitality, travel and business as recognized by readers through a poll conducted by an independent market research company. The award was announced at the Island Shangri-La Hong Kong on September 12, 2019.
Between 2017 and 2019, Chinese business visitors recorded a 104% increase year on year – from 26,860 business visitors in 2017 to 54,830 business visitors in 2019. The rise in travel comes as Chinese businesses are discovering that the UK capital is open for business.
The pharmaceutical industry, at 27 percent, is the largest source of Chinese incentive groups following by the IT sector at 16 percent. Direct sell, automotive, banking and insurance are also important sectors, London and Partners said in a release.
Bingbing Zhao, Chief Representative, Greater China, London & Partners, said: ‘We are honoured and delighted to accept this award on behalf of London. China is a hugely important market to the UK capital in terms of both visits and spend with Chinese business visitors boosting the economy by GBP39 million in 2018.
‘London remains one of the best places in the world in which to grow a global business. It’s convenient, collaborative and connected. It’s a world class city with everything needed to help your business succeed: favourable time zones, access to banks and finance, regulators and government bodies, plus world leading universities and talent.
‘Over 40% of European HQ’s are based in London, which allows quick access to decision makers. And there’s an incredible mix of old and new – highly unique-venues as well, which is very attractive for event planners and delegates. All of this makes London a truly international business city.’
Chinese travellers can now fly direct to the UK from 11 airports, with new options from Changsha, Sanya, Shenzhen, Wuhan, and Xi’an. The new route from Beijing to Edinburgh with Hainan Airlines brings to three the number of UK cities served by direct routes from China alongside London and Manchester.