Catalonia is home to 9,255 foreign companies, a historical record and 62% more than 10 years ago

Catalan Economy

16 Nov 2023

The United States, France, and Germany have the most companies in Catalonia. Notably, there has been a significant increase in companies from Asia, particularly China and Japan.

The President of the Government of Catalonia, Pere Aragonès, announced on Wednesday that there are currently 9,255 foreign companies established in Catalonia as of 2023, a 62% increase from ten years ago.

These figures have been revealed in the study "Directory of Foreign Subsidiaries in Catalonia, 2023", carried out by ACCIÓ-Catalonia Trade & Investment, the Business Competitiveness Agency of the Department of Business and Labour of the Government of Catalonia.

Aragonès revealed this information during the 'Passeu'23. Catalonia, your home for business and technology", organized by the Catalan Government and held at the Teatre Nacional de Catalunya (TNC). The event was attended by several managers and directors of companies established in Catalonia, such as CISCO, Boehringer Ingelheim, and Alstom, who explained why they decided to invest in Catalonia.

The Minister of Business and Labour, Roger Torrent, the Secretary for Business and Competitiveness and CEO of ACCIÓ-Catalonia Trade & Investment, Albert Castellanos, were also present at the event.

The aim of the meeting was to highlight Catalonia's advantages as one of the most dynamic regions in Europe in terms of attracting foreign investment, the strategic importance of multinational companies investing in the country, and networking.

During the event, the Minister announced that the government, through ACCIÓ-Catalonia Trade & Investment, is currently working with a portfolio of 600 projects from foreign companies that have the potential to invest in Catalonia, an increase of 50% compared to the pre-pandemic level. In particular, more than half of these projects are industrial (55%), 11% are R&D projects and digital centers, and 10% are based on the circular economy and decarbonization.

The report presented during the event shows that one in four foreign companies established in Catalonia has been created in the last five years, and the number of foreign multinationals in Catalonia has increased by 100 companies in the last year. Examples of foreign companies established in Catalonia include Rovio, AstraZeneca, Lufthansa, Galderma, and Arxada

The study also highlights the presence of multinationals from the United States (15% of the total), France (14%), Germany (12%), the United Kingdom (10%) and Italy (8%). The growth of subsidiaries from the United States (with an increase of 15% over the previous year), Japan (12%), Singapore (8%) and China (0.5%) also stands out. Companies from 90 different countries are located in Catalonia

In terms of sectors, foreign subsidiaries in Catalonia come from the automotive (16%), food (14%), chemical (12%), pharmaceutical (7.5%), and ICT (4%) sectors in terms of turnover.

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