The overall destination trends in 2010 remain the same as in 2009, with Asia-Pacific ranking as the top destination region by number of FDI projects attracted, the US top destination country and Singapore top destination city. 

Since fDi Markets records began in 2003, Asia-Pacific has been the top destination region for global FDI. The region continued to dominate in 2010, attracting more than one-third of global FDI projects, capital investment and jobs. The numbers of projects and jobs created in the region remained similar to 2009 levels, with capital investment declining 12% to $265bn. However, this decline was lower than the overall global decline in capital investment of 16%.


Rest of Europe growing fastest

Despite an overall decline globally, the 'Rest of Europe' region and North America were the fastest growing regions for greenfield FDI in 2010, increasing 23% and 19%, respectively. However, the two regions attracted less capital investment than during 2009, down 20% in North America and 15% in the Rest of Europe in 2010.

Western Europe, Africa, the Middle East and Latin America and the Caribbean all faced a decline in the number of FDI projects attracted in 2010. Western Europe was the hardest hit as project numbers declined 15%, capital investment figures fell by 28% and 25% fewer jobs were created as a result. The Middle East suffered the most in terms of capital investment, with figures down 45% compared with 2009.

While the number of FDI projects into Latin America and the Caribbean declined by 4% in 2010, capital investment and job creation in the region increased by 8% in 2010, with announced capital investment reaching an estimated $111.99bn. It was the only region to record an increase in capital investment and job creation in 2010, as foreign companies became more confident about the area's economic prospects and established larger projects.

US stays ahead of China

For the second year running, the US attracted more FDI projects than any other country with 1331 projects, compared with 1158 in China. Both the US and China recorded growth in FDI projects in 2010, with a 19% increase in the US and 13% increase in China. Their combined share of global FDI projects increased from 17.7% in 2009 to 20.6% in 2010.

While the US attracted more FDI projects than China, China attracted more valuable projects. China was the number one country in the world for capital investment and job creation with an estimated $77bn investment and 305,615 jobs created in 2010. The US was number two for capital investment and number three for job creation, behind India.

Big five still dominant

The top five destination countries (US, China, UK, India and Germany) together attracted 36% of all global FDI in 2010. The UK and Germany held onto spots in the top five despite a 39% and 11% decline in inward FDI projects, respectively. 

For the second year running, Singapore surpassed other major cities, such as Shanghai, London, Dubai and Hong Kong, to rank as the top destination city for FDI projects in 2010. The city attracted 300 projects in 2010, an increase of 8% over 2009. Capital investment in Singapore was also up 55%, creating 29% more jobs.

In terms of capital investment, Gladstone in Australia was the top city in the world due to one major project in 2010. Malaysian company Petronas announced the investment of $16bn into the city for a gas pipeline. Shanghai was top recipient for jobs created through FDI with an estimated 26,238 jobs created in the city in 2010, a decline of one-fifth on 2009, indicating companies are looking at less overheated cities in China (and elsewhere) for labour-intensive projects.

Asia-Pacific cities dominated the top global cities in terms of job creation. Four of the top five cities included Shanghai, Singapore, Tianjin (China) and Bangalore (India), which together attracted 5% of jobs created globally by FDI in 2010.