Barcelona’s
main competitive
advantages

Barcelona’s
main competitive
advantages

Strategic

Proximity with security:
Barcelona’s strategic location

Barcelona’s award-winning airport offers flights to over 200 destinations and is located only 15 minutes from the city centre via public transport. Barcelona’s strategic location means that international organisations have easy and cost-effective access for their global staff and programs. Some examples:

BCN-Istanbul- 3h 04’
BCN-Beirut- 3h 55’
BCN-Banjul -4h 50’
BCN-Accra – 5h 30’
BCN-Kiev – 3h 40’
BCN-Brussels – 1h 50
BCN-Beijing- 10h 55’

BCN-Rabat – 1h 45’
BCN-Cairo – 4h 06’
BCN-London- 2h 10’
BCN-Paris- 1h 45’
BCN-New York – 7h 46’
BCN-Washington, DC – 9h 00’
BCN-Dubai – 6h 33’

Economic and administrative

An affordable base:
Barcelona’s economic advantages

Barcelona outperforms every other major European city in terms of cost-of-living. International organisations and their staff will find that Barcelona is among the most affordable cities for accommodation, transportation, and goods and services. Some comparisons:

Most affordable major European city for goods and services

Most affordable major European city for cost of living

Most affordable major European city for accommodation

Including rent

  • Geneva – 91.8
  • London – 79.5
  • Paris – 63.8
  • Brussels – 57.3
  • Roma – 57.1
  • Amsterdam – 55.5
  • Istanbul – 53.0
  • Berlin – 51.3
  • Barcelona – 50.5

USD

  • Geneva – 3545
  • London – 2832
  • Paris – 2426
  • Roma – 2242
  • Brussels – 2245
  • Amsterdam – 2182
  • Istanbul – 2166
  • Berlin – 2117
  • Barcelona – 2112

Normal local rent

  • London – 2360
  • Paris – 1610
  • Geneva – 1610
  • Brussels – 1340
  • Roma – 1280
  • Amsterdam – 1220
  • Istanbul – 970
  • Barcelona – 740
  • Berlin – 690

Rankings showing the relative cost.
New York City = Index 100
USB, Prices and Earnings, September 2015

Average rent prices (monthly gross rents) for local households
USB, Prices and Earnings, September 2015

An affordable base:
Barcelona’s economic advantages

Barcelona outperforms every other major European city in terms of cost-of-living. International organisations and their staff will find that Barcelona is among the most affordable cities for accommodation, transportation, and goods and services. Some comparisons:

Most affordable major European city for goods and services

Including rent

  • Geneva – 91.8
  • London – 79.5
  • Paris – 63.8
  • Brussels – 57.3
  • Roma – 57.1
  • Amsterdam – 55.5
  • Istanbul – 53.0
  • Berlin – 51.3
  • Barcelona – 50.5

Rankings showing the relative cost.
New York City = Index 100
USB, Prices and Earnings, September 2015

Most affordable major European city for cost of living

USD

  • Geneva – 3545
  • London – 2832
  • Paris – 2426
  • Roma – 2242
  • Brussels – 2245
  • Amsterdam – 2182
  • Istanbul – 2166
  • Berlin – 2117
  • Barcelona – 2112

Most affordable major European city for accommodation

Normal local rent

  • London – 2360
  • Paris – 1610
  • Geneva – 1610
  • Brussels – 1340
  • Roma – 1280
  • Amsterdam – 1220
  • Istanbul – 970
  • Barcelona – 740
  • Berlin – 690

Average rent prices (monthly gross rents) for local households
USB, Prices and Earnings, September 2015

Low corporate costs

Barcelona ranks among the most cost-effective places to operate in Europe.

For Employers

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Low employee social security contribution rates (6.35%).

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Newly arrived foreigners select between the normal resident income tax scheme or the non-resident income tax scheme (flat rate of 24.75% for a maximum of 6 years).

For Employees

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Employer taxes in Spain (tax and social security contributions) are almost seven points lower than the average ratio for the EU-27 zone.

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Corporate tax rates have been reduced (28% in 2015 and 25% for fiscal years commencing in 2016 onwards).

For Headquarters

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Exemption from corporate income tax for dividends and capital gains earned by foreign subsidiaries and exemption from withholding tax on capital gains and dividends paid.

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Dividends and capital gains generated in another EU country are not subject to withholding tax at source.

Fast-track residency and work visas

Highlights

Spain offers a new, agile process for visas and residence permits for highly skilled professionals.

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20 day application processing, centralised at a single contact point.

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Joint processing for married couples and their children.

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No economic needs test is applied.

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New, agile framework for Spanish visas and residence permits for highly skilled professionals.

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A residence permit allows its holder to live and work anywhere in Spain.

Quality of life

A place to call home:
Barcelona’s outstanding quality of life

Barcelona is consistently ranked as one of Europe’s most desirable cities to live in. It has also been ranked at Europe’s top city for employee lifestyle. For international organisations seeking to attract and retain the best talent, Barcelona offers many advantages. Some of the highlights:

46

theatres

78

museums

Top-five city for international conferences and congresses

53 Michelin-starred restaurants in a 1,5 hour radius of city centre

Culture and Gastronomy

Municipal Services

38

municipal libraries

Top-ranked universal health care (ranked 7th in the world by WHO)

Harmonised public transportation (one ticket for all transport)
11 subway lines and 30 kilometres of tramways
62

public parks and gardens

4

kilometres of urban beaches

117

municipal sports facilities

2524

hours of sunshine each year

180

kilometres of bike lanes

50

municipal cultural centres

Sport and Leisure

Education

Free language lessons for new residents
2

top-ten European business schools

9

universities

28

international schools with extremely competitive rates

Culture and Gastronomy

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78 museums

&

46 theatres

&

53 Michelin-starred restaurants in a 1,5 hour radius of city centre

&

Top-five city for international conferences and congresses

Municipal Services

&

Top-ranked universal health care (ranked 7th in the world by WHO)

&

11 subway lines and 30 kilometres of tramways

&

Harmonised public transportation (one ticket for all transport)

&

62 public parks and gardens

&

38 municipal libraries

Sport and Leisure

&

2,524 hours of sunshine each year

&

4 kilometres of urban beaches

&

180 kilometres of bike lanes

&

117 municipal sports facilities

&

50 municipal cultural centres

Education

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28 international schools with extremely competitive rates

&

9 universities

&

2 top-ten European business schools

&

Free language lessons for new residents