Asian cities are coming for the title of world’s most resilient

‘Challenger cities’ to close in on New York and Tokyo over the next decade in Savills ranking

New York City? This is actually a replica of the Statue of Liberty along a walkway in Odaiba, Tokyo, Japan. r.nagy/Shutterstock

Cities in the US and Japan led Savills’ Resilient Cities Index, but ‘challenger cities’ are rising fast elsewhere in Asia and the Middle East.

New York, Tokyo, London and Los Angeles, in that order, were dubbed the world’s most resilient cities, those that are quick to rebound from global disruptions on the real estate market, according to a recent ranking by Savills.

These cities are likely to remain so until 2028, the consultancy suggested. However, no city in the US or Europe appears in the list of ‘challenger cities’: those predicted to enter the top 50 and make the biggest leaps up the ranking in the next decade.

These challenger cities are Hangzhou, Nanjing and Ningbo in China; Delhi, Mumbai and Bengaluru in India; and Riyadh and Jeddah in Saudi Arabia.

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“What our eight challenger cities have in common,” said Sophie Chick, director in Savills world research, “is that they are all likely to see substantial increases in their GDP and growth in household incomes, while their dependency ratios – the proportion of people of a non-working age to those of a working age – will either fall or increase at a lower rate than other major cities between now and 2028. This indicates that they are set to be young, prosperous, and able to adapt to changes in the way the world operates at a faster pace than some better known locations.”

The topmost cities on the Resilient Cities Index have seen high levels of investment as they are perceived as “safe havens” for capital, commented Simon Hope, head of global capital markets at Savills.

“However, as a result, their real estate assets have become correspondingly expensive and highly sought after,” he added.

The eight challenger cities may offer alternative investment destinations. One in five people in the world are Chinese, and with the Chinese economy growing to become the world’s largest, challenger cities in China offer great areas of opportunity, in particular, Savills researchers suggested.