The Spanish Agency for the Promotion and Attraction of Foreign Investment, Invest in Spain, which reports to the Ministry of Trade, is the sixth best agency worldwide, according to a World Bank report. Global Investment Promotion Best Practices 2012 assesses the work of 189 Investment Promotion Agencies (IPAs) all over the world.
The main purpose of the IPAs is to promote, attract and encourage foreign investment in their respective countries or regions, and help potential investors to set up their businesses.
This is the second time the report has assessed the Spanish agency, which began to operate in 2006, and which has come sixth in a ranking led by Austria, followed by the Czech Republic, Australia, Germany and Denmark. Spain has climbed three positions higher than the previous 2009 report, from ninth to sixth place.
The World Bank report assesses the investment promotion agencies' capacity to cover investors' needs for information through their websites and by direct consultations. For that purpose, the World Bank's Business Environment Consulting Service simulates the steps which must be taken by an investor when choosing the location for their project.
The websites are assessed in terms of their content, promotional effectiveness, design and structure of the information. According to the World Bank, 70% of countries miss out on possible investors because their promotion agencies are not efficient enough at providing possible investors with information and advice.
The Work of Invest in Spain
Invest in Spain will become part of the ICEX framed within the process of rationalising the public business sector in order to continue attracting, promoting and maintaining foreign direct investment in Spain through the Spanish Foreign Trade Institute (Instituto Español de Comercio Exterior - ICEX).
Since it began to operate in 2006, Invest in Spain has achieved a total of 247 projects for Spain, tantamount to investment of approximately 2,427.5 million Euros. In terms of employment, 9,139 jobs have been created. The Company currently has a portfolio of 524 investment projects.
Lines of Work
Invest in Spain works towards improving the business environment in Spain, and every year it draws up a Business Guide and a Barometer to measure the strengths and the opportunities for improvement available to foreign companies in Spain. Furthermore, Invest in Spain has created an Immigration Department in order to advise companies which might wish to set up in Spain.
Foreign Direct Investment plays a strategic role in Spain. It accounts for 42% of GDP and has generated over 1,370,000 jobs, tantamount to 6.6% of all employment in Spain and over 15% of industrial employment.