Istanbul among four megacities of Europe

Istanbul is among Europe's Big Four megacities alongside London, Moscow and Paris, according to JLL's international report

Photo by: AP (Archive )
Photo by: AP (Archive )

A view of Sultan Ahmed Mosque, better known as the Blue Mosque, one of Istanbul's landmarks as seen from a boat in Bosporus, Turkey.

Istanbul now sits firmly among Europe's “Big Four” megacities alongside London, Moscow and Paris, according to an international report.

JLL, a global financial and professional services firm that specializes in commercial real estate services and investment management, made the revelation in a report titled “Istanbul on the World Stage” Friday.

According to the report, Istanbul has been the most improved “emerging world city over the past five years on a range of performance indicators and its economic fundamentals are stronger than many of its global peer cities”.

The report stated that JLL's Index of Commercial Attraction sees Istanbul ranking among the world's top 20 most important business hubs and that among its emerging world city peers, Istanbul stands out for having improved as a trusted financial center, a home to innovation and commerce, and for infrastructure improvements.

"A unique cultural identity and extraordinary vibrancy supports Istanbul's position among world's top five visitor destinations, although it is vulnerable to security threats. Global connectivity is improving rapidly -- and Istanbul is now the world's fastest growing air passenger hub," the report said.

"Expansion of the city's infrastructure is transforming Istanbul and is playing a key role in its economic dynamism," it added.

A view of Istanbul with the Bosporus and the Bosporus Bridge in Turkey (AP)

According to the JLL, Istanbul is witnessing an impressive level of new construction.

"By the end of the current development cycle the city is likely to be home to over five million square meters of modern retail space, including several truly world-class shopping malls; close to seven million square meters of ‘Grade A’ commercial office space, including new business districts such as the Istanbul International Financial Center; around 9.5 million square meters of modern logistics space [across the Greater Istanbul Area]; In excess of 56,000 hotel rooms in over 500 graded hotels," the report said.

Avi Alkas, country chairman of JLL Turkey, said in a press conference that the report was made to tell the facts of Istanbul correctly and that the report will provide significant contributions to the city.

Alkas told that Istanbul is the most crowded city of continental Europe.

"Istanbul on the World Stage report sees Istanbul as a dynamic and increasingly successful Emerging World City, despite a background of rising geopolitical risk.

“A combination of growing consumption, a strong demographic profile and an economy driven by the expansion of financial and business services, and the technology sector have fueled strong metropolitan growth," Alkas added.

TRTWorld, AA